Hyperuricemia: Symptoms, Causes, Risk Factors, Diagnosis & Treatment

Hyperuricemia is a condition where uric acid levels are too high in the blood. This condition itself does not cause symptoms, but if not treated properly it can cause a variety of more serious problems such as gout and kidney stones.

Hyperuricemia or also widely known as high uric acid levels. Because many have been reported in Indonesia, come on, see the full review of hyperuricemia in this article.

What is Hyperuricemia?

According to Medical News Today, the human body produces uric acid as a by-product of various chemical breakdowns and purines, which are then naturally present in many foods. The kidneys themselves will filter uric acid from the bloodstream.

This hyperuricemia occurs when uric acid levels become too high, so the kidneys cannot work properly and optimally. Even if left alone, hyperuricemia can cause a variety of more serious problems, such as gout and kidney stones, so that treatment requires medical treatment.

Normal uric acid levels in the body of men and women are different. In men, normal uric acid levels are below 7 mg/dl, while in women it is below 6 mg/dl. If more than that, it is also known as hyperuricemia.

Diseases Caused Hyperuricemia Too High

Reporting from Healthline , only about a third of people with hyperuricemia then experience symptoms, otherwise known as asymptomatic hyperuricemia. Hyperuricemia itself is not a disease. However, if uric acid levels remain high, then over time it will cause various diseases, such as:

1. Gout

Gout or also known as gouty arthritis, this condition then appears in 20 percent of people who have hyperuricemia that is too high. In addition, decreased uric acid levels can also trigger gout. Gout can present as isolated attacks or sudden worsening of symptoms or flares. Some people’s chronic gout involves a number of attacks that occur over a short period of time.

Gout can affect any joint, but generally occurs first in the thumb area. In addition, other body parts, such as feet, ankles, knees, and elbows are common places where gout occurs. These gout attacks also tend to occur suddenly, often at night. Then, the attacks can be more severe in intensity around 12-14 hours. Even if left untreated, gout attacks will subside in two weeks.

Additional treatment may be needed if hyperuricemia causes gout. In gout, the doctor will then prescribe drugs to treat episodes of gout, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, to reduce inflammation and pain.

In addition, inflammation drugs are also given based on the patient’s condition. Depending on the patient’s condition, if the patient is still healthy and not too severe, the doctor will give stronger drugs, such as prednisone.

Symptoms of gout include:

  1. Severe pain in the joint area
  2. Stiffness in the joint area
  3. Joints that are then affected will be difficult to move
  4. Redness and swelling
  5. Defects in the joint area

2. Tophaceous Gout

Tophaceous gout as a chronic form of gout. If a person has had hyperuricemia for many years, the crystals in uric acid can then form clots which are also known as tophi. These hard lumps can be found under the skin, around joints, and in the indentations above the ears. Tophi can get worse, so joint pain will be even more uncomfortable. In fact, over time it will damage the joints or press on the nerves.

3. Kidney Stones

Uric acid crystals can also cause a buildup of stones in the kidney area. Often, the stones that form are small and can be passed in the urine. However, sometimes the size of these stones can also be enlarged to be excreted through the urine and eventually block the urinary tract.

Symptoms of kidney stones themselves include:

  1. Pain in the side, back and under the ribs
  2. Pain in the lower abdomen and in the groin area
  3. Increased urge to urinate all the time
  4. There is a burning sensation and pain when urinating Bloody urine
  5. Nausea and frequent vomiting
  6. Strong-smelling urine
  7. Difficulty when urinating
  8. Fever and feeling chills if there is a kidney infection.
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In kidney stones, the treatment will depend on their size. Smaller kidney stones often pass on their own. It is important to drink lots of fluids as well as take pain medication when the stones pass.

Larger kidney stones are more likely to be removed. Doctors will use a variety of methods to remove kidney stones or help the body break down these stones.

This buildup of urine itself is an ideal breeding ground for bacteria. As a result, urinary tract infections often occur in people with kidney stones. Therefore, to prevent the occurrence of kidney stones we must adopt a healthy lifestyle.

Causes of High Hyperuricemia

Hyperuricemia occurs when there is too much uric acid in the blood. It also happens when you can’t excrete enough uric acid through your kidneys, or you have too much uric acid in your system.

This buildup often occurs as a result of a diet high in purines, chemicals in many foods and drinks. When the body breaks down purines during digestion, they produce uric acid as a by-product. Uric acid will enter the bloodstream from this metabolism. Then, the kidneys do the filtering of the blood, so the body will excrete it through the urine.

When you eat a high-purine diet, your kidneys can’t filter uric acid from your blood fast enough. This then causes high uric acid levels. So, don’t eat foods with high purine content too often.

Foods that Cause High Hyperuricemia

As previously explained that high uric acid can be caused by eating foods that contain very high purines. Examples of foods and drinks that are high in purines include:

  1. Alcoholic drinks
  2. Several types of fish or seafood, such as sardines
  3. Shellfish
  4. Some meats, such as bacon
  5. Offal, such as liver and kidney
  6. Other causes such as hyperuricemia include errors in purine metabolism and kidney disease.

Risk Factors

Aging and male gender are risk factors for hyperuricemia. In addition, according to a report in the journal Rheumatic Disease Clinics of North America, African descent, Maori and Filipino descent are more at risk of developing hyperuricemia than European descent. The risk factors themselves include:

  1. Renal insufficiency
  2. Metabolic syndrome
  3. A diet high in alcohol, as well as purines, proteins and carbohydrates
  4. Treatment includes thiazides, loop diuretics and low-dose aspirin
  5. Necessary presence of Niacin, Acidosis, Chemotherapy
  6. Diabetes
  7. Hypothyroidism, Psoriasis and Lead poisoning
  8. Polycythemia vera, Toxaemia associated with pregnancy
  9. Tumor lysis syndrome and genetic predisposition

Diagnosis

The doctor will then recommend a urine test as well as a blood test to measure creatinine levels, which will help show kidney function as well as uric acid levels in the body. A urine test can be repeated after you have adopted a purine-restricted diet, which will then help determine if:

  1. You previously consumed too many high-purine foods
  2. Is the body producing too much uric acid
  3. Is the body not secreting enough uric acid

If symptoms of gout are present, the doctor may want to check what fluid previously accumulated in the joint. This itself is done using a fine needle to draw fluid from the joint area, which will then be sent to a laboratory to be checked for evidence of uric acid crystals. The presence of these crystals indicates uric acid.

Treatment Steps

If you have experienced the symptoms previously mentioned, chances are that uric acid levels in your body are high. Therefore, you need to do some treatment or prevention so that uric acid levels decrease or even to avoid the disease.

Treatment of hyperuricemia itself can vary, depending on the type of symptoms to the severity of the patient. The following below are some effective ways you can do to help deal with uric acid levels in the body.

1. Reduce consumption of purine-rich foods

These purine-rich foods can be found in various types of meat, seafood, and vegetables, which will produce uric acid when you eat them. Below are some foods that you should avoid in dealing with excess uric acid levels in the body:

  1. Sardine Food
  2. Dried Nut Food
  3. Food Fish and shellfish
  4. Pork Food
  5. Food Goat meat
  6. Food Beef
  7. Mushroom Food
  8. Cauliflower Food

2. Drink More Water

By drinking lots of water, you will cleanse the kidneys of uric acid. In addition, you will also reduce all the toxins in the body. Also make sure you drink at least 8-10 glasses of water every day.

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3. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Fat cells will produce more uric acid when compared to muscle cells. Therefore, excess body weight will hinder the kidneys in removing uric acid from the body. So, you should maintain a healthy weight, so that your body’s health is maintained. That way, you can avoid gout.

4. Include Fiber Rich Foods

With the help of foods rich in fiber, it will help you in getting rid of various digestive problems from the body. In addition, foods rich in fiber are also considered to balance sugar and insulin levels, so they play a very important role in maintaining uric acid in the body.

5. Avoiding drugs which then cause high uric acid

Did you know that various drugs will actually cause uric acid levels in the body to be high. Therefore, it is important for you to consult your doctor about any supplements or medical drugs.

6. Reduce stress

Increased stress and anxiety can trigger the possibility of inflammation, which in turn causes hyperuricemia. A healthy lifestyle, as well as a careful diet, adequate exercise, and adequate sleep will help you avoid various possible diseases. So, as much as possible you should be able to control stress so you don’t get gout.

Gout is indeed a disease that often occurs in Indonesia. Even so, uric acid can be prevented by eating healthy foods. Thus the discussion about hyperuricemia, from understanding to treatment steps. Hopefully all the discussion above is useful for Sinaumed’s.

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