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  • #3098

    Just a brief introduction to myself on this site, which I found while looking for another one I used to subscribe to.


    Had my first serious attack in the distal big toe joint in 2003 and a couple more attacks later, went through the GP refferal to  rheumatologist rigmarole with inconclusive results i.e. “normal” SUA results, but hereditary aetiology given as the likliest cause of possible gout (way to sit on the fence doc!). Attacks continued sporadically, maybe one or two per year, usually triggered by exercise (walking long distances) and/or tight shoes, which  progressed first to the other big toe/ankle and then thetarsals on the original foot. Various NSAIDS were prescribed before I decided Naproxen suited me best, usually stopping a full blown attack if I hit them quick enough at first signs. Failing that, they didn’t seem to do much, although I still took ‘em.


    Finally, following a series of bad attacks in 2008, I decided to stop ignoring the problem and after a bit of research decided to give up meat and alcohol, which worked like a dream. Went completely veggie for about 9 months and then reintroduced chicken and the occasional glass of cider. Sorted, or so I thought, until last week when a new pair of walking shoes triggered the tell-tale signs. Not a full blown attack and 2 days of Naproxen seems to have it on the mend. But past experience has taught me to avoid walking anywhere for a while, which is not a problem in most cases with my trusty push bike.


    I am still committed to managing my gout without Allopurinol for the time being because I’m in the final year of training as an acupuncturist and I favour a drug free regime if possible. I will eventually do the postgraduate course in Chinese herbs as well and I know there are a number of formulas for both the acute and chronic stages of gout that I shall investigate now that I suspect a diet only approach is possibly not enough.


    I realise taking herbs (and the occasional Naproxen) cannot technically be considered drug free, but I think you know what I mean and I hope to be able to post my findings on here in future. I am already using various topical herbal formulas for other conditions such as rheumatism in my practice of Tuina massage, which show some promise, so I won’t be limiting myself to a systemic approach. In fact, I should point out that my avatar is not entirely frivolous and illustrates a protocol for reducing local inflamation for gout, known as “gold plating”, which I recently came across. 24 kt gold leaf is well known for its excellent results with skin regeneration in ulceration, so maybe there could be a use for it with tophi? I have had it on both toes for 2 days now and feel a definite improvement, but how much is the gold and how much the Naproxen is anybody’s guess.


    I’ve also ordered the UA testing kit, which will mean a more scientific measure of my progress and I’ve just brewed up my first batch of BBB with ginger and Chinese angelica (a blood tonifier), so it will be hard to pinpoint exactly what’s responsible for any improvement, but who cares as long as it all works eh?


    All the best…


    Now on about day 6 of my flare up; unfortunately, I wasn't able to rest up and had to spend quite a bit of time on my feet, which reactivated the attack after I stopped taking the Naproxen. Interestingly, not in the 2 big toe joints, originally affected, which I'd “gold plated”, but instead it moved to the traditional (metacarpophalangeal) joint, which has never been affected previously. I did stick some gold leaf on that too, but only managed to keep it in place for a day, as opposed to the toes, which lasted about 3 days because they were were easier to bandage and are as right as rain now. Smile

    UA meter arrived today, although having read a few more threads about it, I was wishing I hadn't bothered buying it. First attempt, I covered the test area completely but not with a large bead of blood, more of a smear, but resisted the urge to add some more and waited for the result – 11.2 yikes!, but I'm not really terribly confident in i) my technique ii) the machine itself iii) the relevance of the readings. Obviously, my UA levels are too high…I'm having a gout attack – well duh!… didn't need to shell out £90 to tell me that!

    I'll use it in a more structured manner(a.m fasting & p.m bedtime tests)  over the next few days/weeks and see if I can get any feeling of consistency from it. If not, it's going in the bin. Confused

    Just brewed up another 3 litres of BBB. Can't say I felt any noticeable effects from it, but who knows; I'm more willing to give it the benefit of the doubt than that overpriced calculator at the moment.

    At least I don't have to go anywhere for the next 3 days, except for some more Naproxen. I'm due to fly to Marrakesh for 10 days on the 18th, but I'm not sure about that now. If I'm in walking time bomb mode, I couldn't imagine anything worse than being stuck in a 3rd world country, immobilized by another flare up. Might just have to chuck the plane ticket away too. Frown


    UA level 8.7 this morning. Proper drop of blood this time, so can probably diregard yesterday's first attempt. Will do another tonight though to see what difference food makes. Off to the Dr. tomorrow to get more Naproxen and arrange an official test, which I will use to compare the meter against.

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