We have many substances in the blood, and some of them are only there to be transported and eliminated later by the kidneys. They are end products or waste products and can behave like toxins when they accumulate or reach high levels. That’s what happens with uric acid and gout.
A gout is a painful form of arthritis caused by the buildup of uric acid in the joints. Uric acid is the end product of purine metabolism, which is found in foods like meat, fish, dairy products, and organ meats. That’s why in order to treat gout, the recommendations include cutting out these foods and drinking plenty of water.
Interestingly, gout is also known as “the good kind of arthritis” because it’s not usually associated with joint damage or cartilage loss. It may not be as severe as rheumatoid arthritis, and it may not have such long-lasting consequences, but gout can cause very severe pain, limitation of movement, and a real burden on the patient’s quality of life. Thus, it shouldn’t be dismissed, and it is better to prevent this issue than having such severe pain waking you up at night.
In this article, we’re going to discuss the basics of gout and gouty arthritis. After reading, you will learn why it happens and what to expect from this disease. We have also devoted two other articles to give you in detail the signs and symptoms of gout and the treatment options available to manage this disease.
What is gout
Gout is a type of inflammatory arthritis that causes very severe pain and swelling in the joints. It’s a painful condition caused by excessive uric acid in the body. The condition occurs when the uric acid level in the blood rises to higher than normal levels. The excess uric acid can crystallize in the joints and cause inflammation, swelling, and pain.
Gout is often triggered by alcohol, obesity, kidney disease, or certain medications and can be a sign of other medical conditions. But we’ll get to that in detail below.