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A – Z of Illnesses & Conditions

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Gout


Gout:  Gout is a kind of arthritis that occurs when uric acid builds up in the blood and causes joint inflammation. This may occur if your body makes too much uric acid and it has a hard time getting rid of the uric acid. If too much uric acid builds up in the fluid around the joints (synovial fluid), uric acid crystals form. These crystals cause the joint to swell up and become inflamed.

The most common symptom is sudden and severe pain in the joint, along with swelling and redness. The joint of the big toe is commonly affected, but it can develop in any joint.  Symptoms develop rapidly and are at their worst point in just 6 to 24 hours. Symptoms usually last for 3 to 10 days (this is sometimes known as a gout attack). After this time, the joint will start to feel and look normal again, and the pain of the attack should disappear completely.

The exact cause is unknown. Gout may run in families. It is more common in men, and in women after menopause and those who drink alcohol. People who take certain medicines such as water pills may have higher levels of uric acid in the blood. The condition may also develop in people with diabetes, kidney disease, obesity, anemia and sickle cell anemia.

Always seek the advice of your doctor before taking herbal remedies
    


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