Gout is a painful form of arthritis. When your body has extra uric acid, sharp crystals may form in the big toe or other joints, causing episodes of swelling and pain called gout attacks. Gout is treatable with medications and changes in diet and lifestyle.
What is gout?
Doctors place gout under the umbrella term “arthritis” — a broad range of joint diseases and joint pain. Some forms of arthritis inflame joints, while others don’t. Gout is a common form of inflammatory arthritis. It’s due to a crystal called uric acid.
Gout causes pain and swelling in one or more joints. It typically affects the big toe. But it’s also found in other joints, including the knee, ankle, foot, hand, wrist, and elbow.
Who is affected by gout?
Gout can affect anyone. It usually occurs earlier in men than women. It generally occurs after menopause in women. Men can be three times more likely than women to get it because they have higher levels of uric acid most of their lives. Women reach these uric acid levels after menopause.
People are more likely to get gout if they have:
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