January 7, 2012 at 6:12 pm #3702
Sorry I typo'd the title – I don't have my PC glasses on right now.
Backstory: My Grandfather suffered from gout for many decades, but between stubbornness and being easily distracted by life, he'd forget how to take his gout meds properly, and suffered stomach ulcers. His country dr stopped the gout meds, and a few years after that, Granddaddy was hospitalized for severe gout pain. My cousin called to tell me Granddaddy wasn't peeing into his foley cath even though he was receiving IV fluids – as a nurse, that concerned me a great deal, especially since Granddaddy had an angiogram/stent a few years prior, and had to take his nitro pills a few times since. I was able to arrange a flight and spend the night with Granddaddy in the hospital before he passed the day after I arrived. As Granddaddy was in his 80's, no autopsy was ordered, so we're only guessing his kidneys had crystallized based on his cath bag being empty, and the nurse reporting no output when I forced the issue, and his IV fluids were going in at 125cc/hour – none of us are a Dr.
My younger brother arrived for the funeral a few days later. As I was driving him between funeral arrangements, I asked if he ever suffered pain in his joints, since my brother had one kidney removed as a child, due to incomplete ureter causing his kidney to rot. My brother answered that he had recently been officially diagnosed with gout after a few arthritic attacks, and telling the dr our Grandfather had pretty bad gout.
My brother (who rarely goes online) changed his diet to mostly vegetarian, anti-inflammatory diet, as well as taking anti-inflammatory supplements. He reports that the diet change has helped to slow the attacks, although he does become “crunchy” from time to time, when he restricts his diet further.
While researching diets, meds, supplements for gout to pass onto my brother, I read that although gout mostly happens to men, that women become higher risks once they're in menopause. That's what triggered my curiosity about what my UA level migth be since I'm almost to the point of being a higher risk female. I explained this to my GP, who normally seems excited for any reason to order a lab, but when I was finally able to arrange for me and DH's yearly physicals, the GP forgot to add the UA test.
I had pretty much decided that I was going to order a UA home testing kit from UK for my brother, but since there's been issues with the Cherry Juice subscription from Amazon not arriving on his porch, I had the UA kit sent to my house – besides, I had to figure out how to work it so I could teach him.
Well it seems I'm ever so slightly elevated for a female, with my first UA reading at 6.2 mg/dl (fasting). WebMD lists women's normal UA levels at 2.4-6.0 mg/dL.
Whether my recent high-sugar intake might have driven my levels higher is unclear, but I know I took in more sugar than usual when I suffered from the shakes, which had cleared up when I began to restrict sugar and grains (I don't have a blood glucose monitor, since I thought I had fixed the problem once the low-sugar diet fixed the shakes a few years ago). I suppose testing again after I've “fixed my shakes” again will be the only way to know if possibly blood glucose levels might contribute to higher UA levels? Thankfully the cherry juice I've been ordering for my brother doesn't have added sugar.
I'm not sure who'll have the monitor next, as I did purchase the monitor for my brother, but I'll have to find when he'll be home, between his contract job, and his weekend band job.
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