Gout is a painful inflammatory condition, caused by the build-up of uric acid in the bloodstream.
This is partly inherited, but lifestyle factors such as alcohol consumption, diet and obesity are
major risk factors. High uric acid levels lead to crystals forming in the joints.
These crystals can trigger sudden painful episodes of severe joint inflammation (‘attack’). If untreated
these attacks get more common, spread to involve new joints and can cause long-term cartilage
and bone damage.
For more information on gout and a useful booklet see: https://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/conditions/gout.aspx