Could Your Shoes Be Causing Gout?

Could Your Shoes Be Causing Gout?

Here's a piece of health advice for those who suffer gout: take note of what shoes you are wearing. A new study shows that wearing poor footwear is common among gout patients and leads directly to more pain and greater disability.

According to the new examine, gout individuals who make poor footwear choices experienced higher foot-related discomfort, impairment and disability. Gout patients also reported that comfort, fit, support and cost were the most important factors for selecting footwear.

Gout is a type of inflammatory arthritis caused by the crystallization of uric acid within the joints and other tissues. It leads to serious pain and puffiness, with the majority of cases affecting the feet -- particularly the big toe. A study published last month showed that doctor-diagnosed gout has gone up over the past 20 years and now impacts 8.3 million persons in the U.S. Furthermore, older studies have shown that gout contributes to changes in individuals gait (in order to prevent pain) and thus sets the stage for damaged foot function.

Here, New Zealand researchers recruited 50 patients with a history of gout and looked at each case, overall function, foot disadvantages, and disability. They assessed what footwear the patients had and why they chose it.
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    • They found that gout patients often wore improper footwear and knowledgeable moderate to severe foot pain, impairment and disability.
    • Roughly 56% of patients made good footwear choices by wearing walking shoes, athletic sneakers, or perhaps oxfords.
    • These are more appropriate to provide pain relief and not make patients walk funny.
    • Of the remaining patients, 42% wore footwear that was considered poor.
    • Such as sandals, flip-flops, slippers, or even moccasins.
    • Poor footwear lacks support, has improper padding, is actually less stable, and has less motion control.
    • Those gout patients who wore poor shoes or sandals reported increased foot-related disadvantages as well as disability.
    • More than half of all participants wore shoes that were 12 months or older and showed excessive use patterns.

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    • Basically, the idea here is that if you have gout or are at risk of it, you should make sure you have good shoes that are stable and well-cushioned.
    • As well, it's a good idea to replace shoes once they become less capable of fulfill these qualities.
    • After all, you don't want to stop doing physical activity.