Thursday, April 16, 2009

Sleep Apnea and Gout

I have noticed in the past 6 months that my fingers and toes have been swollen and sore especially when I wake up in the morning. At first I thought that it my sodium level was too high and that was causing the swelling, but now I am beginning to wonder. It seems that there is a connection between sleep apnea and gout. Sleep apnea patients receive less oxygen while sleeping than most people. Not only is the brain deprived of oxygen so are other parts of the body. In the bloodstream lack of oxygen causes the buildup of uric acid, which forms monosodium urate, which is a type of salt crystal. These salt crystals form around joints which produces swelling and painful inflammation.
This also explains why most gout attacks happen at night.

There is one thing that makes me skeptical about all this, is that I have had sleep apnea for many years and just now I am getting the gout. I am definitely going to get at least one Doctor’s opinion on this.

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