What Does Gout in the Fingers Look Like?

Gout in the fingers causes visually identifiable swelling and redness around the joints, as well as pain and tenderness, according to WebMD. Although a gout attack in the big toe is most common, gout can affect the ankles, knees, elbows and wrists in addition to the fingers.

First gout attacks usually resolve themselves without medical intervention in one to two weeks, notes eMedicineHealth. However, someone with gout is likely to have several attacks, and these attacks may last longer each time. Gout attacks may or may not involve the original joint affected and over time can affect multiple joints.

Gout is a type of arthritis caused by too much uric acid in the body, explains the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Uric acid accumulates when the kidneys do not function properly, when someone consumes large amounts of foods with purines or when the body increases uric acid production. Uric acid does not only cause gout; it may also form kidney stones or lumps in the skin.

Treatment for gout includes corticosteroids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, states the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Colchicine, especially when used within 12 hours of an attack, can also treat gout. Sometimes a doctor may prescribe colchicine or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to prevent another attack. People can also reduce their risk of gout attacks by eating a diet without purines, staying hydrated, exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy body weight.