“It’s kind of like Gout.”
Dude… You have never had a Gout attack… you have no idea what Gout is like. So don’t even think you know. Having a Gout attack is like joining an exclusive club. “Those who know”. Let me tell you something… you don’t want to be a Member. Ever. I’ve had crushed bones. I’ve shattered my ankles. I’ve torn out my knees. I’ve dislocated and torn my shoulder. I’ve been shot. I’ve been stabbed. I’ve been bitten by snake, dog, human, and cat. I’ve been sucker punched. Tasered. I’ve been hit with a beer bottle. I’ve been kicked in the junk. None of that pain… none of it… comes close to what Gout is like. If someone said, “okay Ogre, you can have a Gout attack or you can take a bullet from a .357 Magnum.” Seriously, I’d take the bullet. No, I’m not kidding and I’m not exaggerating.
When the weight of a light bed sheet on your foot is too much agony… when the pain keeps you up all night. I mean, Zero sleep because nothing touches, relieves, or does a dang thing to help the pain… Shocking, Sharp, Unyielding, Hellish, Torture. You can’t touch your foot. Not even a light touch. Gout is the worst pain I have ever experienced. With a broken bone, you can often find a “Position of Comfort” some way to rest where there is no pain or a reduced amount of pain. With Gout – there is none of that.
So if you never had a Gout attack – don’t you dare tell me that something is like Gout.
What is Gout? It’s basically a crystalline infection. Crystals build up in the joints of a localized area, most of the time in a foot, but sometimes in hands, elbows, knees, could be anywhere. It’s caused by the build up of Uric Acid. Too much Uric Acid builds up, crystals start to form. Those crystals cause tissue damage, pain, and swelling, and more pain. Personally, I think the Crystals are magic and open a portal to the 7th level of Hell and a demon bites you though the portal. Bites down and doesn’t let go.
The Uric Acid levels are a result of proteins that are not being processed out by the Liver and Kidneys. There different reasons for this. But mostly it comes down to poor diet and not enough water. You eat a protein rich diet, drink too much alcohol or soft drinks, and you can build up enough to cause a Gout Attack.
I have this problem because my liver was severely damaged years ago due to trauma, and then later due to my abuse of OTC pain relievers trying to deal with unrelenting migraines. In fact, this liver damage almost killed me. Well, the migraines are no longer the 2 or 3 times a week visitor that they used to be for so many years (since I was 14) but the liver damage remains… this translates into overworked kidneys dealing with proteins that are not broken down right, and that results in a build up of the Uric Acid… and I get a Gout attack. That and I am chronically always dehydrated because I don’t drink enough water.
In short, Gout sucks. In a previous life I must have been horribly cruel to puppies. Gout makes you look at a Chop Saw with a raised eyebrow and a thought that maybe it’s worth it. A quick zip of the saw, a little bleeding, and it will go away. Maybe it will. For awhile. But the Uric Acid level is in your blood. Which means the Gout Crystals will build up again in a different location. It will come back. Gout is insidious. Gout is a Demon. He will hide for awhile, let you forget about him. But once he’s attacked, he will attack again one day.
But that’s not the worst part. The worst is that when you mention Gout… Everyone knows how to deal with it. Because they know someone who has it and all the sudden they are the freaking expert on the subject, even though they themselves have never had it.
Screw those guys. If they haven’t had Gout, they don’t know. Next guy that tells me I should just eat Celery is going to get Throat Punched.
Celery Seed Extract. Cherry Juice. Lemon Juice. Grape Seed Extract. Drink lots of Water. Yeah, that’s all great… but none of that is going to help deal with an acute attack.
What can you do? I will take Advil and Tylenol in combination together. 800 mg of Advil will help start to reduce the swelling that is part of the pain formula working against you. I’m not a Doctor, so don’t listen to me. Listen to your Doctor. Talk to him about it. But I take 4 Advil and 2 Tylenol Extra Strength. And I’ll pound water like crazy.
I was told by a Medical Person that this combo is just as good at knocking pain as a Percocet. Having taken Percocets, and Lortabs, and other medically prescribed narcotic pain relievers… The Advil and Tylenol combo is the best. A lot of people say Alieve is good, but that stuff just doesn’t work for me. If a Doc is going to write a scrip for you, I’d say take Lortab if he gives you the option. Because at least Lortabs will make you sleepy and you’ll be able to rest.
Hopefully he’s giving you something else to help fight the Gout. Allopurinol is a common one, and there are others. But they don’t help you deal with the pain of an acute attack.
You need to help the pills fight the acid. You first need to flush your system to help prevent more Uric Acid from building up. I was told by a doctor that Citric Acid will latch onto the Uric Acid and help flush it out. Lemon Juice. Pure Lemon Juice in water. No Sugar. Chug it. I don’t know if this is true or not, but it’s better than just plain water, so why not. And if it does help, that’s great.
While the attack is acute, you are going to have to grit your teeth and suck up the pain until it subsides. This can take hours or days… And maybe another week or longer to fade away completely. While drinking water, you can drink the Cherry Juice, and all the other home remedies which I have to say, really don’t seem to do anything for me. Cherry Juice does, I think, to a small degree. But I don’t know if it’s better than drinking the same amount of just plain water. But I’ve been testing all the other theories out there… and it’s mostly all crap. Don’t buy into it. Seriously, it’s a ton of wasted money.
Don’t drink ANYTHING with High Fructose Corn Syrup. One medical site suggested that ANY FLUID is good. No. It’s not. I’ve found that beverages with HFCS makes things a lot worse. And when I’ve had a Gout Attack, it was usually after a day of drinking a lot of Mt Dew or something else with HFCS. Even when I was eating a low protein diet. I suspect that the HFCS may have more of an effect on Gout than a piece of lean meat. All I know is, that stuff is poison and drinking it causes hell on wheels pain down the road. Drink Water.
To help deal with pain when it’s the worst… Usually in the middle of the night. There is no sleep. So don’t try to sleep yet. Because all you can do is focus on the pain. You gotta get your mind off it. I’ll play violent video games or watch a movie. Don’t drink alcohol, that makes it worse and the attack will last a lot longer. Concentrate on something that will take your mind away from thinking about how much it hurts. Whatever you do though. Drink water. With Lemon Juice in it. A lot of it.
If you are having a Gout attack, I am truly sorry. I feel for you. Because I know what that is like. I’ve had Gout in both feet, both ankles, both knees, and in my left hand. Oh that was fun… my hand was swollen like a cartoon hand that was hit with a hammer. Huge, red, and unbelievably painful. The worst place to get a Gout attack, I think.
The best way to avoid a Gout Attack is to not feed the demon. Avoid red meats, fatty fish like Sushi Grade Tuna, Shrimp, and anything made from Swine. Bacon, Ham, Pork Loin… You know… All the best foods. Just don’t. Seriously, that Bacon is just not worth the pain. That London Broil, that Prime Rib… Not worth it. Moderation, brothers. This is a lifestyle change. You are going to need to develop a taste for Salads. Others meats that are not mentioned, are still meats and still have protein so they need to be taken in moderation. Don’t skip the family BBQ, just enjoy more of the Slaw and Potato Salad and less of what is going to make you consider cutting off appendages.
Hey, I’m not just saying this… I’ve been living this myself. I’ve been there. It’s not worth it.
Oh, I’ll enjoy a Burger once in awhile… Like maybe once a month. Know what? I enjoy that burger more when I do have one. But don’t get carried away with it. And then I’ll follow up with tons of water and skipping meats altogether for a few days. You don’t have to go completely Vegan. Just be very careful.
And don’t think that “Oh, I’ve not had an attack in a year. I’m fine now!” Don’t. The Gout Demon is still there, sleeping. Waiting for you to slip up again.
Don’t feed the Demon.