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There Are Some Experiences You Never Forget

There are some experiences you never forget: riding a bike for the first time without the training wheels, buying your first car, that first kiss, and a bit later in life, losing your virginity. There's one more first that some adults find themselves adding to that list with much regret: their first attack of gout. As Shirley Einstein* of Skokie, Illinois described it, "The first time I had gout, I dropped a quarter on my toe with a shoe on and almost took flight. With proper treatment (Benemid) it went away and didn't return for many years. The pain is excruciating." 

"One Night, I Swear To God, I Thought My Toe Was Broken."

Morton Smith of Schenectady, New York tells a similar tale of anguish. "One night, I swear to God, I thought my toe was broken. But I couldn't figure it out. I was just sleeping in bed. It just didn't make any sense. I wanted to go to the emergency room but the pain was so bad I knew I couldn't drive. Besides, the snow was knee-deep and there was no way in hell I was going to try to put on my boot."

Trenton, New Jersey resident Marnie Castleton, describes her first time, "My oldest daughter, was getting married the next day and after a very hectic day of final fittings, and then the rehearsal dinner, I finally collapsed for the night. Not two hours later I woke up in extreme agony.

"I'll Never Be Able To Wear Those $450.00 Prada Pumps."

I looked at my toe and it was huge. I thought I'd gotten stung by something, because I didn't remember stubbing it or anything like that. My second thought was, 'Damn! I'll never be able to wear those $450.00 Prada pumps.' I was crying and rocking myself in the bed."

Ben McKinley of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho also had wedding woes, "I was supposed to get married the very next day to the most wonderful girl in the world but I woke up that night and thought I was dying. I ended up sending relatives chasing all over town looking for a 'dressy' pair of slip-on slippers, well, actually, two pairs of slippers in two different sizes, because I needed a bigger slipper for the right foot, the one with gout, just so I could limp down the aisle."

These gout sufferers have learned an unfortunate truth: Gout is an equal opportunity disease. Gout respects no family occasion. It can strike anyone, at any time.

* Names have been changed.