If you suspect you have gout, it is critical to your future health that you get a proper diagnosis early on so you can learn to control your gout symptoms.
There are 4 diagnosis procedures to help determine if you have the disease…
1. Physical Exam
A physical exam is necessary in order to diagnose gout. Your medical history and your families medical history needs to be evaluated, as well.
The indications of gout are red and shiny skin on the affected area, which is caused by tophi below the skin.
2. Blood Test
A blood test can determine the levels of uric acid present in the blood; however, this is not a foolproof method for a good diagnosis. The reason for this is that if the patient is in a gout attack, the uric acid levels can register in a normal range.
High uric acid levels do not necessarily mean there is a gout presence in the body.
X-rays should be taken. They can help to determine whether there are tophi crystals around joints and under the skin. However, even x-rays will often show the joints to be normal.
This is a more reliable procedure for a correct diagnosis.
The procedure consists of drawing a sample of synovial fluid, with a syringe and needle, from the affected joint. A microscope is then used to analyze the fluid.
If there is a presence of monosodium urate (MSU) crystals in the fluid it will mean there is a presence of gout.
Are you or someone you care about suffering from gout?