Climate – A Gout Cause You Never Suspected

You may have heard people complain about the weather outside affecting certain conditions such as arthritis, but you may never have suspected that the climate in which you live could be a gout cause. Over the last few years, it is becoming commonly accepted that previous hypotheses that said the weather could not affect gout are actually quite incorrect.

Though studies have been performed and have come up with some results, due to the high number of variables, the impact that climate has as a gout cause is by no means well understood. Therefore, the studies have looked into geographical distribution with regards to the number of cases of gout as a weak guide regarding the weather that is most likely to bring about the disease.

Results showed that flare-ups of gout were most common during hot and humid weather. This being said, these same scientists reported that drinking a lot of water was a notable preventative for gout attacks during these hot, humid periods.

The research was performed in 2006 by Boston researchers (and presented at the 2006 American College of Rheumatology’s annual scientific meeting) who studied 197 participants who had gout, and examined the influence of temperature and humidity on the frequency of the condition. When the participants experienced a gout attack, they completed a two-day control questionnaire.

Further data was obtained through the collection of the ZIP code of the participants and the federal climate data from those regions so that they would know when the participants were in risk periods, and when they were in control periods. Adjustments were made when additional gout cause risk factors were present, such as the consumption of meat, alcohol, or diuretics.

These scientists noted that humid, hot temperatures brought about a significantly increased number of gout attacks in the participants. However, in terms of barometric pressure and precipitation, no gout cause association was found.

It was suggested by the researchers that in order to prevent flare-ups of their gout, it was very important that they avoid dehydration by drinking additional fluids during times of hot and humid weather.

If you believe that you are experiencing gout, or you wish to discuss different risk factors or gout cause in your life, make sure to make an appointment with your doctor. He or she will be able to help you with additional preventative measures beyond simple hydration. You will be able to learn overall preventative actions and may be prescribed medications to help you to stop gout attacks from occurring, and to ease them when they do indeed happen.

If you live in a climate that is hot and humid, you should recognize that this is an important gout cause and you may wish to try to live and work in climate controlled environments. A dehumidifier may be helpful at a bare minimum, but an air conditioned environment will make all the difference for keeping the temperature gout-friendly and minimizing the additional humidity in the air. No matter if you’re in air conditioning or not, though, proper hydration remains key.