Gout Pain: It Really Does Hurt
Gout has been described as “unbearable,” “the most painful thing that has ever happened to me,” and as being worse than broken bones. The words “excruciating,” “burning” and “boiling” are often used by people trying to communicate how much it hurts.
If you have gout, you have plenty of company. Approximately 8 million Americans have gout, and an estimated 3 million of them have experienced an attack in the last year. That’s a lot of people in a lot of pain.
Why Does It Hurt So Much?
Gout hurts because it involves intense inflammation, which is caused by the interaction of the needle-shaped crystals in the joint with other cells in the body. You might see redness and swelling on the outside of the painful joint, but it’s what is happening on the inside – the surge of inflammatory chemicals – that is the culprit.