I sometimes even found it difficult to walk
Sid, 73 years old
"I woke up from the pain one night: My right big toe was swollen and red, and really hurt."
When I was about 48 years old I woke up from the pain one night: My right big toe was swollen and red, and really hurt. That’s when the problems started. So I went to the doctor. He diagnosed me with gout and I was prescribed medication to treat it. But I still kept on having attacks of gout and sometimes even found it difficult to walk. Over time, I started to notice pain in other joints, but the worst symptoms were in my toe. I can still remember a business trip where I had to put my leg up because it hurt so much. And during another business trip I had to find a doctor because I couldn't bear the pain anymore.
The gout attacks were irregular and sudden
The uric acid levels in my blood were checked regularly and I was prescribed various medications. But I still had irregular and sudden gout attacks. We continued to try and find the right medication and the right dose. We finally succeeded after about three years of treatment, and I was then only prescribed allopurinol. Since then I haven't had any more gout attacks. Over time I started drinking a lot less alcohol and the allopurinol dose was lowered to 100 mg. I still take that dose now.
I also changed my eating habits back then. I made sure to eat less offal and legumes. But I must say, I can't remember particular foods ever having triggered a gout attack. Nevertheless, I still avoid fatty foods and large portions.
Gout no longer affects my life
My medication still works very well and I’m hardly in any pain. Every now and then I have aching limbs, but I can’t say whether that’s to do with gout or just with my age. At my age, we’re simply not as fit as we used to be.
I try to get lots of movement and have been doing regular exercises for a few years now. I think that's really important and it’s really good for me.
I now find myself having to go to the doctor quite regularly for other check-ups. They then measure my uric acid levels at the same time and I get the medication I need.
I currently take one tablet a day, in the evening. I used to always take them in the morning. But I have to take a number of other medications now too, so I’ve started taking it in the evening. It all works out fine that way.
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