Gout is a type of arthritis of the joints. Although gout is most commonly seen in adult, children can also have this problem. Getting to know about gout can help you protect your child from the disease or treat it effectively if needed.
Signs and symptoms of gout
If you children have gout, symptoms may include:
−Severe pain in the affected joints. Maybe one or more joints are affected such as the wrist, big toe or ankle. Your children may be unable to do physical activities or bear weight. Pain may be felt in the morning. And the pain may wake your children up at night.
−Swelling and inflammation – your children may tell you that they feel very hot in the joints.
−When you touch the joints, you can feel tenderness to the touch.
−The skin around the affected joints become red or purple.
−Your children have fevers and chills.
−Your children may lose appetite – they do not want to eat anything.
When you should take your children to a doctor
You should take your children to a hospital if you think your children have gout and it has not been diagnosed before or the pain gets worse and your children have a fever (a high body temperature). Your children’s condition should be diagnosed and confirmed by a medical professional because some other conditions should be treated immediately. If your children have been diagnosed with gout and they do not get better after a couple of days using doctor’s prescription, they may need other medicines. Any other abnormal symptoms need attention from a doctor.
Causes and risk factors of gout in children
You may have heard about uric acid. It can come from the body or from foods. When uric acid builds up in your children’s blood and the kidneys cannot filter enough out, crystals can form around the joints, causing them to become swollen and painful.
Nobody knows why children catch gout. Studies suggest that gout in children may come from:
−Inherited genetic disorders that cause hyperuricemia (abnormally high levels of uric acid in blood)
−An injury or procedure in early ages.
−Gender: boys are more likely to have gout than girls.
−Family history: several genes are associated with gout.
−Obesity: children who are obese or overweight are more likely to develop gout.
−Medicines: some medicines may increase the risk for gout in children such as diuretics or water pills.
−Tumors and cancers
−Lead exposure: your children may develop gout after a long-term exposure to lead.
Treatment for gout in children
The goals of treatment for gout in children are to relieve the symptoms and prevent further complications. To relieve symptoms of gout in children, the doctor may recommend you to give your children some non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Keep the affected joints elevated above the level of their heart may help reduce inflammation. To prevent further complications and attacks, your children should do more exercises, change the way they eat and take medicines that help lower the level of uric acid in their blood. You should remind them to do exercises or you can do exercises with them.
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Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Review Date: August 30, 2017 | Last Modified: August 30, 2017
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http://umm.edu/health/medical/reports/articles/gout. Accessed February 24, 2017.
Questions and Answers about Gout. https://www.niams.nih.gov/health_info/gout/. Accessed February 24, 2017.