Gout is a type of arthritis that is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body. The surplus of uric acid causes needle-shaped urate crystals to form in the joints or surrounding tissues. The urate crystals cause pain and inflammation.
You may help prevent gout by avoiding alcohol.
Avoid eating foods that are high in purines and limit the amount of protein from meat that you eat to about 5 or 6 ounces per day.
Am I at Risk
Risk factors for gout include:
• Consuming alcohol
• High blood pressure
• High cholesterol and high triglycerides
• Arteriosclerosis- Narrowing of the arteries
• Low-dose aspirin
• Certain diuretic medications (thiazide diuretics) and anti-rejection medications for organ transplant recipients
In addition to causing gout, a build-up of uric acid can cause kidney stones. Untreated gout can lead to advanced gout, which is associated with nodules of urate crystals that form under the skin (tophi). For some people, gout is a recurring condition that happens several times a year.