Gout treatments involve changes in your diet as well as taking medications that reduces the level of uric acid in your blood. Making necessary changes in our diet is the first step in gout treatment. Adequate fluid intake reduces the likelihood of gout to recur, it also prevents kidney stone formation in gout sufferers.
Reducing or totally eliminating alcohol consumption will have a relevant effect in gout treatment. Alcohol has diuretic effects that contribute to dehydration, which induces gout attacks. Weight reduction can also significantly reduce your chances of getting another gout attack as well as avoiding purine rich foods. Purine, when processed by the body produces uric acid. So you’ll want to avoid these foods.
Gout Treatment (Medical)
There are essentially three phases in the medical treatment of gout. Painrelievers such as Tylenol or other strong analgesic that help to manage the pain; anti-inflammatory Agents such as NSAIDS (Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs), Corticosteroids or Colchicine are used to treat joint inflammations; and reducing blood uric acid levels. Low blood uric acid levels reduces the risk of another gout attack as well as risks of kidney stones and other kidney diseases.
Indomethacin and Naproxen are NSAID’s that show good anti-inflammatory effects in acute gout treatments. Those who are allergic to aspirin are advised to avoid NSAID’s due to the risk of intense allergic reaction. Ibuprofen is also a popular NSAID that have had good anti-inflammatory effects and has been receiving positive comments from patients. Colchicine is another drug that is used to ease gout attacks as well as prevent it. Colchicine can be taken orally or intravenously. Given hourly or every 2 hours until pain is reduced.
Corticosteroids such as prednisone, hydrocortisone, methylprednisolone and triamcinolone are powerful agents used in gout treatments. It decreases swelling, pain, redness and warmth. It can be taken orally or injected directly to the affected joint. Corticosteroids can be administered to patients suffering from liver, kidney or gastrointestinal problems, have congestive heart failure and to those allergic to aspirin. These can be very effective in treating acute gout especially if only one joint is affected. However, it’s use should be avoided when bacterial Arthritis is present and monitored in people with cases of high blood pressure and diabetes.
In addition to gout treatments, other drugs can be taken to lower blood uric acid levels. Low blood uric acid levels reduces the risk of another gout attack as well as risks of kidney stones and other kidney diseases. These medications work in 2 ways: Decreasing the body’s production of uric acid or having the kidney work harded by increasing the excretion of uric acid. These medications are generally taken after the inflammation has subsided because they can actually worsen the attack. Allopurinol is one of the drugs that lowers uric acid production. It blocks the conversion of uric acid from purine foods. Those with poor kidney function should use this medication cautiously because of the risk of developing rash and liver damage.
Probenecid – Lowers blood uric acid levels by Increasing the excretion of uric acid into the urine. Also, before taking the medication make sure to discuss with your doctor any history of kidney disease, stomach ulcer or if you’ve had kidney stones. Uric acid lowering medicines are avoided in patients who are having acute gout attacks. For unknown reasons, these medications may actually worsen the inflammation when taken during an attack. Therefore these medications are only administered after an attack.