3 Simple Steps to Prevent Your Next Gout Attack

Aug 07, 2023
3 Simple Steps to Prevent Your Next Gout Attack
Gout attacks can be scary, especially for first-timers who can even end up in the emergency room due to intense pain. Fortunately, you may be able to prevent your next gout attack by making a few lifestyle tweaks.

Gout attacks can be unpredictable and extremely painful. Most sufferers experience intense pain in the big toe joint located. Some may even end up in the emergency room, not knowing what could be causing the excruciating pain. 

Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis that’s caused by the build-up of uric acid in the blood. Statistics suggest that men are more likely to develop it because estrogen makes it easier for the kidneys to eliminate uric acid. 

When uric acid accumulates in the bloodstream, it usually crystallizes around the joints. These small crystals irritate joints, causing intense pain and inflammation.

Fortunately, there are several ways you can prevent your next gout attack. Uric acid levels are influenced by many factors, some of which are under your control. 

Our expert, Dr. Kenneth Meisler has decades of experience treating foot and ankle conditions, and to help you out, we asked him to explain steps you can take to reduce your risk of a gout attack.

1. Find out what type of gout you have 

Depending on the cause of your goat, you may be diagnosed with either primary gout or secondary gout. With primary gout, the cause of the disease is unknown. 

Secondary gout is caused by an underlying condition that impacts your ability to eliminate excess uric acid. Kidney disease is a common cause of secondary gout, but other causes include chronic dehydration, chronic malnutrition, and significant alcohol consumption. 

If you’re diagnosed with secondary gout, working with a medical provider to fix the underlying condition can prevent gout attacks. 

2. Make tweaks to your diet 

Gout is characterized by excess uric acid in the bloodstream, and uric acid is a byproduct of processing purines. 

Many foods contain purines, including organ meats, pork, turkey, venison, duck, veal, and alcoholic beverages. By reducing the amount of purines you ingest, you significantly reduce your chances of having another gout attack. 

Sugary foods and beverages also raise your risk for gout attacks, as high blood sugar levels are linked to difficulties with eliminating uric acid. 

3. Learn what medications can impact your ability to eliminate uric acid

Certain medications can impair your ability to eliminate uric acid. These include the following:

  • Diuretics
  • Chemotherapy drugs 
  • Immunosuppressant medication

If you take medications regularly, speak to Dr. Meisler about their potential impact on your kidneys and your ability to eliminate uric acid. In some cases, you may be able to switch to medications that are friendlier to your kidneys. 

Learn more about managing gout

Gout is a condition that has many factors at play, including the health of your kidneys, the amount of purines you ingest, and the medications you take.

If you’re looking for ways to prevent your next gout attack, contact us to schedule an evaluation with Dr. Meisler, who creates personalized treatment plans that take into account all of your risk factors.