2. Medications Used Together with Uric-Acid Lowering Medications (Prophylactic Medications)
These meds help prevent gout flares and decrease its severity. They are meant to be used for only a short-term. Once taken, expect to feel relief from gout symptoms within 24 hours.
These are the prophylactic medicines commonly prescribed by doctors:
- Colchicine (Colcrys).
- Indomethacin (Indocin, Indocin-SR).
- Diclofenac (Voltaren, Cataflam, Voltaren-XR, Cambia).
- Ibuprofen (Advil).
- Naproxen sodium (Aleve).
3. Medications That Provide Immediate Relief from a Gout Attack
Gout attacks often come at unexpected times, so you want to make sure you are always equipped with this medication. That way, when you experience a gout flare, you can treat it right away. It helps decrease pain and inflammation in the affected area.
These are the medications commonly prescribed by doctors:
- Colchicine (Colcrys).
- Methylprednisolone (Medrol).
- Prednisolone (Orapred).
These medications are extremely helpful in making the pain from a gout flare disappear. However, you shouldn’t depend on it completely as too much steroid use can have undesirable side effects such as cataract formation and bone loss.
If you combine meds, make sure to speak with your doctor first. They are knowledgeable on drug interactions and can advise you on the right meds to take together and warn you against dangerous combos that can lead to undesirable side effects.
Is Gout Medication Necessary?
Studies have shown that even the most disciplined sufferers who follow a strict gout diet will not experience a significant decrease in uric acid levels. This means that gout medication is a must especially for those with severe or chronic gout.
Let’s say you follow a strict diet and maintain a lifestyle optimal for avoiding gout, does that exempt you from taking medications? Sadly, no. Gout is a lifelong condition, and certain types of medications need to be taken regularly. If you skip treatment, you’re likely to experience a gout flare in the future, and this time, it will be more severe.
Your doctor will prescribe you medicine based on your health status and personal preference. Most often, it will be a combination of short-term and long-term medication.
However, if your gout is mild and you don’t experience flares too often, you can stick to following a rigorous diet and making the required lifestyle changes.
Using Diet as a Gout Treatment
The low-purine diet is usually the prescribed diet for gout sufferers. This is because purines are the main culprit for gout attacks.
They break down in the body and turn into uric acid which can build up in the joints. The gout diet can be quite tricky but here are the main principles to keep in mind.
1. Consume Low-Fat Dairy Products
Low-fat dairy has been found to lower your risk for gout. This is because milk products contain proteins called casein and lactalbumin which have a uricosuric effect, meaning it increases the excretion of uric acid in the urine. It also has orotic acid which decreases the reabsorption of uric acid in the body.
2. Limit Meat
Frequent meat consumption has been linked to a number of diseases including high blood pressure, diabetes, heart diseases, and cancer. It takes a lot more work for the kidneys to process meat, and the body cannot tolerate high levels of fat and blood from meat.
They say it’s important for protein but did you know that you can also get your protein from other healthier sources like plants?
Some plant-based protein sources include tofu, tempeh, edamame, seitan, lentils, chickpeas, peanuts, almonds, spirulina, quinoa, hemp seeds, chia seeds, beans with rice, potatoes, and kale.
Limit your meat intake to twice a week and replace it with the healthy alternatives mentioned above. The meats you can eat in moderation include beef, lamb, goat, rabbit, deer, fish, turkey, duck, and bison.
Avoid pork as much as possible. It’s a scavenger animal that eats anything, including bad food. Also, stay away from organ meats. These contain the highest levels of purines and toxins which are all bad for your gout.
You also want to limit animal-based foods like gravy, bullion, chicken soup, and Jello.