Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis. Common symptoms of gout arthritis include pain, swelling and stiffness in the affected joint. This form of arthritis usually affects the big toe, knee, or ankle joints. The pain associated with gout arthritis may start suddenly. The problem of gout arthritis occurs more frequently in men.
Gout arthritis can be acute or chronic. It is interesting to note that many people may never experience a second gout attack. Too much uric acid in the body (hyperuricemia) generally results in gout. Appropriate medication and consumption of a healthy diet can help an individual in obtaining relief from the problem of gout. Gout arthritis may be caused by different factors. Some of the common causes of gout arthritis are discussed below.
Common Causes of Gout Arthritis
High Purine Food Items
It is interesting to note that gout arthritis may be caused by the intake of food items rich in purine. Food items such as dried beans, peas, sardines, anchovies and so on contain high levels of purine. Excessive intake of these items may increase the risk of gout.
Excessive consumption of alcohol can also result in the problem of gout. It is interesting to note that beer and spirits can increase the level of uric acid in the blood. Beer is also rich in purine. Intake of alcohol also reduces the excretion of uric acid from the body. It is essential to note that moderate intake of wine may not increase the risk of developing gout.
It is important to note that certain medications may also increase the level of uric acid in the blood. Some of the medications which may result in gout include diuretics prescribed for heart diseases, aspirin, levodopa (used for parkinson’s disease) and so on. Intake of niacin can also result in the problem of gout.
Different studies have shown that the problem of gout often runs in families. An individual is at a higher risk of developing gout if his/her family members suffer from this problem.
Exposure to Lead
Overexposure to lead can also result in gout. This is because lead poisoning can affect the normal functioning of the kidney which may reduce the excretion of uric acid from the body.
It is important to note that excess weight can increase the risk of developing gout. This is because excess weight results in extra pressure on the joints.
In addition to this, fat tissue can result in some chemical changes in the body which may lead to the production of excessive uric acid in the blood.
The problem of gout may also be caused by a kidney transplant. This is because renal insufficiency may prevent the excretion of uric acid from the body. Heart and liver transplants can also result in the problem of gout.
Other Health Issues
Health problems such as high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, psoriasis and hemolytic anemia can lead to gout. An individual suffering from any of these problems may have a higher risk of developing gout.