• 2481 Bloor St. W, Toronto
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Open

Mon – Fri: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sat: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Sun: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Book Appointment

Sign Up for an Appointment

Our simple to use, online booking process makes it easy to book an appointment with a chiropodist for any of our services. No referral needed!
Book Appointment

Sign Up for an Appointment

Our simple to use, online booking process makes it easy to book an appointment with a chiropodist for any of our services. No referral needed!

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Important Facts You Need to Learn About Gout

Gout is an inflammatory disorder caused by high levels of uric acid in the blood. Uric acid crystallizes in the form of urate crystals in the joints of hands, feet and elbows. Gout affects roughly 3 million Canadians each year.

Illustration of foot with close up of build up of uric acid in joint of the big toe

Causes

Gout is caused by a combination of environmental and genetic issues. Most commonly, environmental triggers include diet with foods that have high levels of purines which then break down into uric acid. Foods that can lead to high levels of urate are red meats, seafood, refined or processed carbohydrates, sugary drinks and alcohol such as beer and hard liquor.

Gout was often called the “disease of kings” as only wealthy people would be afflicted due to their rich diet and excessive drinking. The most famous king to be afflicted with chronic gout was King Henry VIII. Genetic factors such as hyperuricemia can impact the frequency of gout attacks.

Hyperuricemia occurs when your body does not filter urate properly from the bloodstream, either from the kidneys or the gut. Another common issue is if your body doesn’t break down sugars properly, this can affect how urate is stored. The risk of gout increases with age, particularly in women. The role of estrogen helps to regulate urate in the body so after menopause, urate levels in women increases drastically. Certain medications may also lead to hyperuricemia, such as diuretics and cyclosporine.

Finally, conditions linked with hyperuricemia are high blood pressure, kidney disease, thyroid disease, diabetes and sleep apnea.

Symptoms

While your body is producing high levels of uric acid this stage is called Asymptomatic gout as there are no signs or symptoms. The next stage is Acute intermittent gout and it starts off with a painful swelling in the joint often in the middle of the night. Most people wake up with the feeling their joints or foot is on fire. Gout most commonly affects the joint of the big toe because urate crystals deposit at the furthest joint in your body – gravity also plays a role. However, gout can affect any joint, the ankle and elbow are also commonly affected joints. The pain and swelling of the joints is likely to be severe for the first 4-12 hours and then a lingering pain or discomfort can last for weeks. The affected joints are also noticeably different with a red, swollen, tender and warm appearance. As gout progresses and is left untreated, the range of motion of the joint is also limited due to the swelling and deposits of hard urate crystals lumps called Tophi which damage and affect the joint structure and the surrounding skin.

Gout vs. Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) can have similar symptoms as gout but the causes are different. RA is an autoimmune inflammatory condition where your own body attacks healthy synovial cells inside your joints. This attack causes inflammation, pain and swelling and most often attacks the hands, wrists, ankles and knees.

Tests

Gout can be diagnosed clinically with the appearance of a red, hot and swollen joint but as well as the timeframe. Your family doctor will also check for urate crystals by running tests on the fluid from your joint, blood work and possibly order an x-ray.

Treatment

Depending on the stage of gout, your family doctor will prescribe medication to either help with the pain and swelling or to prevent further attacks. Medication to help relieve pain and swelling are NSAIDS, specifically Indomethacin, colchicine and possibly corticosteroids. These drugs are often prescribed for acute gout attacks.

For chronic gout, medications to help prevent further attacks are allopurinol and probenecid. Along with medication your family doctor will advise you to make some lifestyle changes such as reducing alcohol intake, losing weight and quitting smoking.

After a gout attack, it is advised to visit a chiropodist to assess the range of motion at the affected joint and see if your gait has been altered and affected.

Here’s to Many More Years of Foot Care!

At Feet First Clinic, we’re always excited to welcome new clients! After a successful 12 years of treating our amazing patients, we’re ready to continue offering only the best foot care services and products. Give us a call to ask our friendly staff any questions you may have! Our Toronto foot specialists are ready to help!

Call us at 416-769-3338 or Book Your Assessment Today!

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Emily

Administrative Assistant

Emily is the newest addition to the Feet First family. She assists with the clinic’s accounting and finances, as well as all the behind-the-scenes work that keeps the clinic running smoothly. In addition to her accounting smarts, she brings sunshine and positivity to everyone at Feet First Clinic.

Erica Halpern

Marketing and Administrative Assistant (She/Her)

Part of our administrative support staff, Erica also works behind the scenes writing and editing content for our website and blog. She loves researching and writing educational content to help patients and anyone dealing with pain. When she’s not busy in the clinic, you’ll find her at her local gym, exploring underground music, hiking with friends, or cheering on her favourite sports teams (Go Jays!). She also loves huskies!

Sophie Rudahigan

Clinic Administrator (She/Her)
Sophie prides herself on providing top-tier customer service. She is here to ensure a smooth visit for all clients. In addition to overseeing the clinic’s administration and day-to-day operations, she maintains the cosmetic appearance of the store. She is the magic behind our elaborate display case designs and also ensures the clinic is stocked with stylish (but still orthopedic!) footwear options for all ages.

Bianca Carter

CEO (She/Her)

Day in and out, Bianca works hard to ensure Feet First Clinic runs smoothly. Customer service is at the top of her list and she treats every customer like family. Bianca has a passion for fitness and is dedicated to helping people take care of their feet and body. There is no problem that she can’t solve and she believes that where there is a will, there’s a way.

Carolina Charles

Patient Relation Coordinator (She/Her)

If you’ve been to the clinic before, chances are you had the pleasure of meeting Carolina! Carolina’s daily goal is going above and beyond to make sure patients are always completely satisfied. Having worked in the podiatry industry for 22 years, Carolina brings a wealth of knowledge pertaining to client service, insurance policies, and procedures.​ She steers the ship to make sure everything runs smoothly on the daily. Carolina is known for spicing up every outfit with her signature costume jewellery.