Gout can trigger a lot of phenomenon in our bodies which can result in a great discomfort and pain. Ranging from mysterious lumps to tiny yellow chalky nodules, numbness, tingling, and many others. There is no telling what gout will cause next! Sometimes, we even overlook the most common complications and that includes the occurrence of fever.
This article has the intention to clearly unravel the mystery of the occurrence of fever during gout attacks. Can gout really cause a fever? How can gout be the reason for its occurrence? Is it always gout who causes the fever during gout attacks? Or is there any other reason behind the occurrence of fever during gout attacks besides gout?
The Mechanism behind Fever
No one can deny that having a fever is just so infuriating and tiresome. Admit it or not, every individual sees fever as a bothersome thing to happen because it can mean a lot of different things. Fever can be described as the rise of the body temperature above its normal level. The mechanism of this sudden rise of the temperature of the body is due to the defensive reaction of our immune system against malicious invaders. These invaders include bacteria or viruses which causes damage to body tissues. When our immune system detects this, it will automatically respond by producing pyrogens.
To sum it up, fever can cause invading bodies to die. Sadly, the raised temperature and the discomfort can do nothing against the uric acid crystal. Fever during gout attack should be verified first to be sure if gout is the only reason behind its occurrence. Sometimes, it can be septic arthritis which is a painful join infection which can be caused by germs that roam around the bloodstream or from the body’s other parts. When infection occurs, it is definite that foreign invaders are present in our bodies. As a result, the body sends a go signal to start different mechanisms. It is advisable to consult a trusted doctor if fever is experienced for a long period of time.
Our bodies consist of multiple mechanisms which fire various autoimmune responses. As an example is the detection of foreign bodies. When our immune system detects that foreign bodies are present, it will fire an alarm which sends a message to the brain that an unwelcomed visitor has entered a restricted part of the body.
These foreign invaders will gradually cause damage to the cells. When cells are greatly injured, it will slowly die. Dead cells release a substance called arachidonic acid. This arachidonic acid will then be converted by the enzyme cyclooxygenase which is then converted into a variety of prostaglandins which can induce pain, inflammation, fever and make the body become more sensitive to pain.
With gout, the crystallized uric acid formed in the joint is considered by our immune system as a foreign invader. That is the reason why the body induces the production of pain resulted in a series of attacks made by neutrophils. For starters, these neutrophils are a type of white blood cells that are not designed to dissolve uric acid crystals. Which means that the attacks made by these neutrophils are useless and only results in more pain and inflammation in the affected area.
Sadly when the neutrophils retreat with no chance against the foreign invader, it will soon die. Hence, arachidonic acid is released which motivates more neutrophils to die for the same reason and this cycle doesn’t end there.
It is always said that fever in gout only means that there are cells dying. Yet, little did everyone knows that there are other reasons behind fever’s occurrence. Holistic fever is included on the list. This kind of fever is characterized by a rise in temperature on a specific part of the body. And in the case of gout, the temperature will only raise in the inflamed joint. As an example, it can mean that the tissues are being damaged by the uric acid crystal. This is more likely if the crystal in your joint is already protruding.
UTI or Urinary Tract Infection should also be considered as a possible cause of fever occurrence. Individuals who suffer from gout are more likely to form a kidney stone due to uric acid. This stone can wound the urinary tract thus improving the chances of infection.
Things to Consider Doing When Fever Is Experienced With Gout
When you experience fever with gout, it is better to consult your doctor first to be prescribed with the right medication to take. Taking antipyretic, analgesic and anti-inflammatory medications will also help to ease your gout. Over the counter, NSAID can also be considered such as aspirin. These medications will not only ease the pain from gout attacks but also in treating fever.