Doctors for Gout
There are many forms of arthritis. Most types share common
symptoms, including joint pain and inflammation. However, different types of
arthritis require different types of treatment. What works for osteoarthritis
may not help your gouty arthritis. Therefore, an accurate diagnosis is
Gout is usually diagnosed after an acute attack of gout symptoms. Many
doctors will not make a positive diagnosis of gout until the patient has had at
least two episodes of acute
After a physical examination and medical history, your
doctor may order tests to confirm the diagnosis.
Tests for Gout
Uric Acid Blood
The first step in diagnosing gout is usually a uric acid
blood test. High uric acid levels are associated with gout. However, it’s
important to note that you can have high uric acid levels and not have gout. In
addition, blood uric acid may be normal during an acute attack. This test is a
good starting point. It can be used to monitor your progress in lowering your
uric acid level, but it’s not diagnostic by itself.
A joint aspiration is usually the next step. This test
involves removing a sample of the fluid from the affected joint and examining
it under a microscope for urate crystals.
If you have persistent joint disease or tophi under the
skin and your doctor suspects chronic gout, an X-ray may help with the
diagnosis. This will show if there are lesions or permanent damage.
Primary Care Physician
primary care doctor is usually the doctor who treats gout. They can order uric
acid blood tests, perform joint aspirations, and prescribe medications to treat
A rheumatologist is a physician with special training in treating
diseases of the joints and
connective tissues. A rheumatologist can provide more specialized care if your gout is especially severe or involves joint damage.