Gout Specialist

Valerius Medical Group & Research Center

Rheumatologists located in Los Alamitos, CA

When you have sudden, severe pain in your joints, it can feel debilitating. Even moving hurts. Gout is a complex form of arthritis and treatment requires a rheumatologist with vast experience and skill. Dr. Nathaniel Neal and Dr. Rebekah Neal in Los Alamitos Long Beach, CA, understand how to treat and prevent gout attacks. Call Valerius Medical Group & Research Center today to see what they can do for you, or book a consultation easily online.

Gout Q & A

What is gout?

Gout is a complex form of arthritis that includes sudden and severe pain attacks. These attacks occur in your joints, often at the base of your big toe, and are accompanied by redness, heat, and extreme tenderness.

The initial, intense pain of gout can last from a few hours to a few days and is followed by a lingering discomfort that may last up to a week. During your gout attack, your range of motion may be limited.

Gout is more common in men than women, although once women hit menopause, gout becomes more frequent.

What causes gout?

Gout occurs when there’s a high level of uric acid in your blood, which happens when your body either produces too much or your kidneys excrete too little. This causes urate crystals to form and accumulate in your joints. These needle-like crystals lead to inflammation, causing the pain, swelling, and redness associated with gout.

While anyone can develop gout, there are risk factors that make you more prone to the disorder. Consuming a lot of red meats, seafood, fruit sugar, sweetened drinks, and beer may make you more likely to have gout. Other risk factors include:

  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Heart disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Certain medications

How is gout treated?

Dr. Nathaniel and Dr. Rebekah can treat gout many ways. They may recommend medications to help reduce pain and inflammation. These may include:

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Colchicine
  • Corticosteroids

To prevent further attacks, your rheumatologist may also suggest medications to block uric acid production or ones that improve uric acid removal.

Beyond medications, your rheumatologist counsels you on lifestyle changes that can protect your joints from the long-lasting effects of gout. They may suggest:

  • Limiting alcohol and sugary drinks
  • Increasing water intake
  • Limiting red meats, animal organs, and seafood
  • Exercising regularly
  • Maintaining a healthy weight

If you’re looking for a way to reduce the frequency and severity of your gout attacks, you can find help at Valerius Medical Group & Research Center. Call today to learn more, or book your appointment online now.