We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Tophaceous Gout?

By Emma Lloyd
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
TheHealthBoard is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At TheHealthBoard, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Gout is a disease which causes sudden burning pain in the joints, due to inflammation. The primary symptom of gout is an elevated level of uric acid in the bloodstream. A diet rich in the amino acid called purine or a defect in uric acid metabolism are the main causes of this condition. Tophaceous gout, also called chronic gout, occurs in people with long-term elevated uric acid levels, which leads to the formation of large crystals of uric acid in joints.

Excess uric acid in the bloodstream can crystallize into monosodium urate, which is deposited on joint cartilage, tendons, and tissues surrounding the joints. Tophaceous gout occurs as deposits of monosodium urate deposits, also called tophi, increase in size. This usually happens after several years of elevated uric acid levels and minor gout symptoms.

The primary symptom of gout is the severe pain in the joints. The pain is caused by the crystals that form inside the joint, which makes movement painful, as well as by inflammation that occurs around the joint. Often the joint is so tender that even a very slight touch can cause very severe pain. Other possible symptoms include low fever, swelling, redness, and stiffness in the affected joints. Gout most often affects the big toe of the foot, but may also affect the ankle, heel, or instep of the foot, or joints in the knee, elbow, wrist, fingers, or spine.

In people with tophaceous gout, symptoms increase in severity as the deposits of monosodium urate become larger. As the deposits increase in size, they begin to extend outside the joint, causing noticeable lumps beneath the skin. In advanced cases, the tophi can become so large that they break through the skin. The tophi are visible as white chalky-looking nodes surrounded by reddened and inflamed skin.

Complications of tophaceous gout may become serious if the nodes are not treated. Gout itself, as well as tophi development, can severely reduce mobility due to pain and stiffness in joints. In addition, when tophi break through the surface of the skin, there is a risk they may become infected or ulcerated. Infection may lead to a potentially fatal illness called septicemia, in which bacteria enter the bloodstream.

Tophaceous gout treatment includes anti-inflammatory medications as well as drugs to help manage pain and lower blood levels of uric acid. If uric acid levels can be reduced to a consistently low level, the crystallized monosodium urate eventually begins to dissolve, reducing the size of tophi nodes and helping to alleviate symptoms. Dietary changes, including reducing the intake of foods high in purine, are also useful. If these treatments are not enough to halt or reverse the progress of the disease, surgery to remove tophi may be required.

TheHealthBoard is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By catapult43 — On May 04, 2010

There is a new drug on the horizon that might help treat severe gout.

The medication involves an enzyme that changes uric acid into a water soluble substance that can be than easily eliminated from the system.

TheHealthBoard, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

TheHealthBoard, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.