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Gout and Kidney Disease – Is There a Connection?


Gout affects about ten percent of the population, It is a predominately male disease, 90% of those suffering from it are men. Women can develop gout as well, but that usually happens after menopause.

Kidney disease is found in thirteen percent of the population, and the numbers are rising fast. The kidneys filter out waste products, among them uric acid. In patients with kidney disease, these filters do not function properly. They may become blocked or they may become weak. When they are weakened, protein and blood may leak into the urine, one if the indicators of the disease.

Gout is caused by a build up of uric acid in the joints. This acid is carried there via the blood stream, so it stands to reason that there will be a connection of some sort between gout and kidney disease. However, it’s not much talked about.

Uric acid crystals can build up in the kidneys and block the tiny filters in the kidneys. If gout can be kept under control via medication and diet, then kidney disease associated with gout is less likely. However, if the gout is not controlled, kidney disease can follow.

What about the other way around? Can kidney disease cause gout? The answer is yes. Because the organ is not functioning properly, uric acid can’t be filtered out. When that happens, it builds up in the bloodstream and is carried to the joints. It is then dropped off, causing flare ups.

The best way to prevent this vicious cycle is to watch your diet carefully and make sure you visit your doctor. Blood and urine tests can determine if either disease is under control. If not, medications can be prescribed to help.

The diet for both diseases is remarkably similar. Low protein is important. Purines increase the acid content and excess protein can’t be filtered properly. Sodium and some minerals must be watched carefully. If the kidneys are all right, maintaining adequate hydration is important.

Source by Mary Bodel


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