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Millions of people in the United States are affected by an arthritic condition known as gout. It develops as a result of excess levels of uric acid, which can happen due to genetic reasons or from eating certain foods. The first symptoms are often felt in the joints of the big toe and can cause severe pain and discomfort. The foods to avoid for patients who get frequent gout attacks include red meat, shellfish, excess alcohol, and drinks that are made with large amounts of sugar. It is important to get a proper diagnosis, and this generally happens when uric acid levels are measured via a blood test, or from having an X-ray taken. People who are diabetic or overweight may be more susceptible to developing this condition. It is strongly suggested that patients who suffer from recurring gout be under the medical care of a podiatrist who can diagnose, treat, and manage this painful ailment.
What Is Gout?
Gout is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. The condition usually affects the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack can occur at any random time, such as the middle of the night while you are asleep.
Prior to visiting your podiatrist to receive treatment for gout, there are a few things you should do beforehand. If you have gout you should write down your symptoms--including when they started and how often you experience them, important medical information you may have, and any questions you may have. Writing down these three things will help your podiatrist in assessing your specific situation so that he or she may provide the best route of treatment for you.