Most people with gout have another attack within two years. This attack may affect many different joints. With recurrent gout, tophi can form. Tophi are chalky deposits of uric acid that commonly occur in the elbows and earlobes.
The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history, and perform a physical exam. A sample of fluid from the affected joint will be taken. This fluid will be tested for uric acid crystals.
Other tests may include:
Blood and urine tests—to measure the level of uric acid in your blood and to assess kidney function
—a test that uses radiation to take a picture of structures inside the body, especially bones; used to check for joint destruction
Treatment depends on whether the gout is acute or recurrent.
Acute Gouty Arthritis
In general, the sooner treatment begins for an acute attack, the more effective it is. Treatment depends on:
Onset of symptoms
Number of joints affected
Previous responses to treatment
Putting a warm pad or an ice pack on the joint may ease the pain. Keeping the weight of clothes or bed covers off the joint can also help.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), for example:
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*7/19/2007 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance
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Comparison of oral prednisolone/paracetamol and oral indomethacin/paracetamol combination therapy in the treatment of acute gout-like arthritis: a double-blind, randomized, controlled trial.
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2007;49:670-677. Epub 2007 Feb 5.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a