The Symptoms of Gout
There is a whole wide range of symptoms of gout that show up. These gout symptoms are pretty consistent from patient to patient and are:
- A joint, or the area around a joint is swollen, often so bad the skin literally shines because of the swelling.
- It’s hot to touch, like a mini heater.
- It’s red.
- The swollen joint becomes stiff and you lose your range of motion.
- The symptoms of gout usually begin with mild pain which progresses over a few days to being unbearable. It make you shake, sweat, scream, cry and shiver.
- There is no physical injury to the site before the pain begins.
- The pain is like somebody is jabbing you with a knife or needles whenever you move it.
- It is quite common for gout to attack in the middle of the night, or you `discover’ your gout first thing in the morning.
- The first attack is usually in one joint only, subsequent attacks can hit several joints at one time.
- The more gout occurs the more it will affect spread to other joints and sites around your body. My first gout attack was in my left big toe, and my last gout attack involved:
My left ankle
Under my foot
My calf muscle
Knee joint. Talk about a painful experience!
- As gout progresses as it always will unless you get a thorough grasp on it, tophi develop. These develop in several joints, in your organs and under the skin, in some cases gout can cause kidney stones to form too.
As you suffer gout attack after gout attack you will become very familiar with the symptoms of gout.
For me, my first gout attacks were in my feet. I had no idea what gout was and didn’t spot the symptoms of gout as they were coming on.
It is most common for men to have gout attacks that hit their lower extremities – usually gout in the big toe or ankle. For women though it is the opposite with gout usually being a destroyer of hands.
Why do the symptoms of gout show up in hands and feet?
It’s all about temperature here. Basically your body works at an ideal temperature and it tries to maintain that temperature. What this means is that as the blood is shot out around your body it cools at the extremities (this is why arctic explorers lose fingers and toes instead of nipples!).
The cooler blood allows the uric acid crystals to form more easily. As a result almost all initial attacks are in the distal extremities.
This means that to be able to spot or remove a gout attack you should be very vigilant for any symptoms of gout in fingers, toes and feet.
However, gout does move. As a gout attack gets underway, the symptoms of gout can and do move. The more gout attacks you have the more the symptoms of gout seem to move. Mine used to move up my leg taking in my knee and the muscle fibers above.
Think about it this way: when you have the uric acid crystals in your feet (for example) they get stuck because the blood vessels are narrower. As you start battling your gout, the crystals are displaced and painfully, torturously make their way up through the blood vessels to get sent through to your kidneys. This is why your symptoms of gout will appear to change location.
The Symptoms of Gout – What happens next?
The game is only just beginning. The part of the gout attack where the uric acid crystals are stabbing, poking and causing damage to your joints is like the first half. These symptoms of gout are the ones that bring the initial pain and swelling.
Then your body realizes that what is acutally happening in the joint is not good and so it sends out white blood cells to combat gout. These blood cells are getting stabbed by the lance-like uric acid crystals and so the gout attack continues. It is this inflammation that your body causes because of the uric acid crystals that brings with it the immensely emotionally disturbing pain of gout.
Normally when there is a problem in your body the white blood cells go and fight the infection and try and fix what is broken. With gout this is not so easy to do. So your symptoms of gout tend to actually get worse.
Sounds horrific – and it is!
The Symptoms of Gout – What to do?
Well obviously you want to get rid of the gout pain, right?
That’s pretty much everybody’s goal and that is what the doctor tries to do. He tries to get rid of the gout pain. However, this doesn’t give you any power. Instead it forces you to think that gout medicine is your only hope.
This is so untrue. Your symptoms of gout actually begin long before there is any gout pain. These are explained in the book `How To Spot the Gout Danger Zone’. Once you know these symptoms of gout then it becomes easy to avoid gout all together!
The problem though with western based medicine for gout is that it is unreliable. For many people, the medicines that are used to try and combat the symptoms of gout are pretty hit and miss and ineffectual. This is not to say they don’t work for some people.
My father has been on allopurinol for over thirty years and has almost no gout attacks. But me, well allopurinol just doesn’t work. So much for that genetic stuff!
The mainstream medical establishment approach is firmly rooted in pharmaceuticals being the best answer. Doctors are taught that your gout is just down to uric acid.
They are never taught to think that your symptoms of gout are down to the fact that your kidneys are compromised by the lifestyle you live.
Every doctor is taught to treat symptoms BUT NOT causes.
A gout doctor is NO different.
They react to the symptoms of gout: swelling, soreness and pain rather than the causes of the symptoms of gout.
But as we know gout is a condition that you have caused by your diet and your lifestyle.
The result then should be to focus on getting rid of the symptoms of gout and by neutralizing the root cause.
You must first understand how the different aspects of your life come together to create your symptoms of gout. Once you have this understanding you can then start to take apart the puzzle and solve your gout easily.
I suffered many years of crippling gout attack after crippling gout attack. I finally realized that the answer was to abandon the misinformation and get to know how my body really works. It took a lot of study, a lot of trial and error but the result was most definitely worth it.
If you want to begin to take control of your life, and get rid of your symptoms of gout for good you need to develop your awareness. You must stop reacting to your symptoms of gout and start to build a gout hostile environment within your own body. Once you do this gout disappears.