Gout services offered in Cranston, RI

Gout can impact daily life and inflict chronic pain. In Cranston, Rhode Island, Deepan Dalal MD, MPH, RhMSUS, and the RI Rheumatology team provide a range of options for treating gout, including effective medications. Dr. Dalal is keenly aware of the potential consequences and joint damage of untreated gout. With the right customized medical care, Dr. Dalal can help you properly manage your gout. Find pain relief and prevent future attacks with the help of RI Rheumatology. Call the office or schedule your appointment online today.

What is gout?

Gout is a type of arthritis involving the formation and buildup of urate crystals that cause inflammation of your joints. Gout is characterized by sudden severe pain, redness, swelling, and tenderness in the joints. It often affects the joint at the base of the big toe.

Gout attacks start suddenly and can wake you up at night. The symptoms of gout can come and go, with intense joint pain, limited mobility, and inflammation and redness being the most common.

Untreated gout can damage the joints over time. If you have a fever and your joint is inflamed and feels hot, this could indicate an infection.

What causes gout?

If you have high levels of uric acid in your blood, urate crystals can develop. Uric acid is naturally produced by your body to break down purines – a chemical compound in your body and certain foods and drinks, such as some seafood, vegetables, and organ meats.

Uric acid is usually dissolved in your blood and travels through your kidneys into your urine. If your kidneys excrete too little uric acid or your body produces too much uric acid, it can build up into sharp, needlelike crystals in your bloodstream. It’s these needlelike crystals that inflame and irritate your tissues and joints.

Excess alcohol consumption and drinks that are sweetened with fructose (fruit sugar) are some of the factors that might contribute to higher uric acid production. Other factors that can play a role include:

  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart and kidney disease
  • Certain medications, such as thiazide diuretics

In some instances, urate crystals can collect in the urinary tract and lead to kidney stones.

What are the treatments for gout?

The RI Rheumatology team diagnoses gout utilizing a variety of effective tests, such as blood tests and X-rays. Treatment typically involves medications to treat acute attacks and prevent attacks from occurring in the future.

To treat your gout, your RI Rheumatology provider might recommend:

  • Pain relievers
  • Corticosteroids
  • Medications to block uric acid production
  • Medications to enhance uric acid excretion
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications

You should drink plenty of fluids, stay hydrated, limit or avoid alcohol, and exercise regularly. Maintaining a healthy body weight is also an important way to lower your risk of gout. RI Rheumatology monitors your gout with regular blood work. 

To see quality care for gout, call RI Rheumatology, or book an appointment online today.