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Body Talk - 20th January

My guest this week was Dr Christopher Kelsey from Spire Hartswood Hospital talking about gout.

If you over - indulged over Christmas and New Year you may have experienced an attack of gout. Once dubbed the disease of kings, gout is now becoming more common in the UK.

Despite the fact that 250,000 people in the UK are thought to have gout, a recent survey showed that fewer than 2% understood what it was and only 1% knew it was a form of arthritis.

Consultant Rheumatologist Dr Kelsey explained that gout is on the increase due to changes in our diet and lifestyle. Obesity is one of the main causes, it isn't just down to alcohol, although that doesn't help. It mainly affects men, but women can get it as well, usually after the menopause. Certain drugs can also aggravate the condition.

Gout is very painful,  and attacks the joints. Bouts can last for many days, sometimes weeks at a time. It is treatable through the use of drugs. If you get an attack it is best to take some over the counter painkillers to ease the area. If it persists then is the time to see your doctor for dietary advice and more long term treatment through prescribed medicine. 

The best way to prevent it is to be careful with your diet and get regular exercise. Keeping fit and healthy will certainly prevent this painful condition from causing you too much trouble.  



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