Gout is a form of arthritis that triggers intense abrupt pain, redness and swelling in the involved joint and usually affects the great toe, ankle and the knee. In some cases, it can also affect the fingers, elbow and other joints in the body.
Gout is caused by the accumulation of uric acid crystals. Once the uric acid crystals buildup inside the joint of the elbow abundantly, it can cause severe pain in the elbow along with other symptoms. Gout usually occurs among individuals above 50 years old and men are more susceptible to end up with this condition.
Attacks of gout is minimized within 1-2 weeks even without treatment, but taking medications and implementing lifestyle changes can lessen the symptoms and also minimize recurrent attacks in the future.
Causes of elbow gout
- Taking medications that causes an increase in the levels of uric acid in the body such as diuretics and medications that contains salicylate.
- A family history of gout
- Excessive consumption of alcohol interferes with the elimination of uric acid in the body as well as a high-purine diet which can cause increased amounts of uric acid in the body to accumulate.
- A severe exposure to lead can cause gout
- An overweight person is at risk for developing gout
- Kidney problems reduce the ability of the body to properly remove waste products and can cause an increase in the level of uric acid in the body.
- Other conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure or hypertension and hypothyroidism can also cause gout.
- Injuries on the elbow and dehydration
Symptoms of elbow gout
- Severe pain which is sudden in onset and usually occurs at night or early in the morning.
- Severe pain where the individual feels that his/her elbow is dislocated
- There is difficulty in moving the elbow upon waking up in the morning.
- Incapacity to lift, write and any activities using the affected hand
- Mild fever with chills
- When pain becomes intolerable, there is discomfort when moving the hands, even a touch of clothing and draught of air causes agonizing pain that can last for a few days or up to a week.
- The elbow is red, swollen, tender and warm to the touch.
- The skin found on the elbow becomes shiny and can peel or scale off after a few days.
- Limited range of motion.
Treatment and home remedies for elbow gout
- Apply cold and hot compress to minimize the swelling and pain.
- Drink plenty of liquids especially water in order to flush out uric acid build up in the body and also helps lessen the pain.
- Berries can be eaten to help in minimize the uric acid in the body and lessen pain. The individual should eat cherries regularly if suffering from gout.
- Cut down excess weight to minimize recurrent attacks of gout in the future.
- Consume foods that are low in purine content such as red meat, foods that contain high amounts of protein.
- Engaging in exercises on a regular basis
- If possible, stop consumption of alcoholic beverages