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What is Gout &
High Uric Acid?

Gout is one of the most painful forms of arthritis. It can cause an attack of sudden burning pain, stiffness, redness and swelling in a joint, usually a big toe. These attacks can happen over and over unless gout is treated. Over time, they can harm your joints, tendons, and other tissues. Gout is most common in men.

Gout is caused by too much uric acid in the blood. Most of the time, having too much uric acid is not harmful. Many people with high levels in their blood never get gout. But when uric acid levels in the blood are too high, the uric acid may form hard crystals in your joints.

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Signs & Symptoms
of Gout

 
Sudden, intense pain in a joint, typically the big toe or ankle
Swelling, inflammation, and a feeling that the joint is very hot
Extreme tenderness of the joint to even the lightest touch
Red or purple skin around the joint
   
With recurring attacks, soft fleshy growths may appear; called tophi, they are accumulations of uric acid crystals. Over time, gout attacks may occur more frequently, involve more joints, have more severe symptoms, and last longer.
 
 
 
Learn How High Uric Acid
Causes Gout
 
Gout is caused by the buildup of too much uric acid in the body. Uric acid comes from the breakdown of substances called purines. Purines are found in all of your body’s tissues. They are also in many foods.

Normally, uric acid dissolves in the blood. It passes through the kidneys and out of the body in urine. But uric acid can build up in the blood when:

  • The body increases the amount of uric acid it makes.
  • The kidneys do not get rid of enough uric acid.
  • A person eats too many foods high in purines.

When uric acid levels in the blood are high, it is called hyperuricemia. Most people with hyperuricemia do not develop gout. But if excess uric acid crystals form in the body, gout can develop.

 
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