Gout attacks affect an estimated two million people in the United States alone. At least 75- 90% of the victims are men and the remainder is women who are post-menopausal or hypertensive. Many of these individuals live unhealthy life- styles and are not prepared for the sudden attacks of gout. The sudden attacks of gout arthritis are extremely painful and affect a singular joint, tendon or other bodily tissue.
Gout is the oldest form of inflammatory arthritis; closely related to rheumatic arthritis. The medical condition initially and predominately affects the joints and must be treated accordingly. ‘Gouty arthritis’ is potentially damaging if left untreated. Chronic gout damages major tissues and/or organs, yet it is unlike most types of arthritis which are innately chronic.
Generally, gout arthritis is characterized by painful sudden attacks that last days to weeks proceeded by long periods with no symptoms. The ‘gouty arthritis’ may be acute or chronic. The best way to control the onset or progression of gout is to avoid things that may trigger these symptoms.
During a gout attack, the victims suffer with several vital symptoms. Such symptoms include:
- sharp pain
- skin lump
These symptoms generally occur during the night and is particular unexpected. The most common area affected is the big toe. However, gout attacks have been known to also attack other joints such as the finger, ankle, elbow, knee, or foot. The condition is caused by a buildup of uric acid that has lodged in these joints. More so, the kidney no longer has the ability to flush away this excess uric acid. The disease may develop in men or women with:
- Kidney Disease
- Sickle Cell Anemia
Gout arthritis occurs in 4 stages:
Asymptomatic: There are no symptoms
Specifically, an illness/condition is present with symptoms or the individual has recovered from the illness/condition and no longer has symptoms. It also indicates that the person is actually healthy. Lastly, the particular illness/condition does not produce any symptoms.
Acute: Sudden pain attack in the joints
The pain occurs especially in the feet and legs. This is a result of uric acid buildup or hyperuricemia.
Intercritical: Requiring immediate/reoccurring treatment
Condition is progressing quickly. The condition is on the way to critical or chronic gout/ permanent damage.
Chronic: Long- lasting or persisting condition
Chronic gout arthritis suggests repeated episodes of gout attacks or joint pain.