Print this topic

HealthInfo Waitaha Canterbury

Medications for gout

You can use medication for a short time to treat an acute attack of gout. You may also need to take medication long term every day to prevent gout attacks and to prevent complications such as damage to your joints or kidneys.

Treating an attack of gout

There are various treatments to help relieve the pain and swelling of a gout attack known as anti-inflammatories. These include non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs), colchicine and a class of drugs called corticosteroids, most often prednisone.

All anti-inflammatories can have serious side effects especially if used for more than a few days. This is especially important if you have other health conditions and are on other medicines.

Your doctor will discuss the medications with you and give you advice on what is most appropriate for you.

Medication to prevent gout

If you have had more than two attacks of gout in a year, complications of gout or a strong family history, your doctor will recommend you take medication to lower the uric acid in your blood. This will reduce your chance of getting acute gout and long-term damage.

The goal with this medication is to keep your uric acid levels below 0.36 mmol/L. You will need blood tests to check your levels.

Written by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed July 2021.


See also:

HealthInfo – Gout management plan

Page reference: 462

Review key: HIGOU-18727