If you have previously had a
gout attack, you are likely to have another,
especially if you are not managing the disease with medicines or other
treatment. The goal of treatment is to prevent future attacks, to reduce high
uric acid (hyperuricemia), and to identify and treat
the causes of your hyperuricemia. Your doctor will review your health history
and current health status to identify other medical conditions and medicines
that could be causing the elevated uric acid levels. Factors such as alcohol
consumption, diet, and body weight can be modified to lower your uric acid
levels and reduce the risk of future gout attacks.
To reduce the pain, swelling, redness, and warmth of the affected joint(s) in an acute gout attack:
Rest the affected joint(s).
Take one or more of the following medicines at the first sign of a gout attack,
as prescribed by your doctor:
Colchicine is often prescribed to prevent flare-ups
during the first months that you are taking medicines that lower uric acid.
Take steps to reduce the risk of future
Control your weight. Being overweight increases your risk for gout. If you are overweight, a diet that is low in fat may
help you lose weight. But very low-calorie diets increase the amount of uric
acid produced by the body and may bring on a gout attack. For more information,
see the topic
especially beer. Alcohol can reduce the release of uric acid by the kidneys
into your urine, causing an increase of uric acid in your body. Beer, which is
purines, appears to be worse than some other beverages
that contain alcohol.
Limit meat and
seafood. Diets high in meat and seafood (high-purine foods) can raise uric acid
Making changes in your diet may help with your gout. If you
want to try an eating plan for gout, see:
Talk to your doctor about the medicines you
take. Certain medicines that are given for other conditions reduce the amount
of uric acid eliminated by the kidneys. These include pills that reduce the
amount of salt and water in the body (diuretics, or
"water pills") and niacin. Regular use of low-dose aspirin may raise the uric
acid level. Low-dose aspirin may be important for the prevention of
stroke or heart attack, so your doctor may want you to continue to take it.