A Gout Survivor's Tale
"He Wouldn't See A Doctor, But Just Drove Me Crazy."
Marvin Vilner* of Cleveland,
Ohio was sure his toe was broken,
but his doctor knew different: Marvin had a severe case of gout. Marvin had
tried icing his toe, but neither the ice or over the counter anti-inflammatory
medications seemed to have any effect on his swollen digit. Marvin's wife,
Jane, had this to say, "You know men. When they get sick, they avoid like
anything getting proper medical care. He wouldn't see a doctor, but just drove
me crazy asking for tea and sympathy."
The Pain Was So Bad
At last, Jane put her foot down and made an appointment for Marv to see
the family physician. "It wasn't so easy getting him there-he couldn't put
a shoe on over that toe, but after a bit of a struggle I managed to convince
him to just go barefoot. I guess the pain was bad enough to make him do what he
had to do."
Marvin's doctor prescribed a regimen of medication that after some time
made the swelling and pain subside. He also counseled Marv on lifestyle
changes. The doctor told Marvin that if he made a few changes in the way he
lived, he'd have fewer attacks of gout, and those attacks he suffered would be
less severe were he to adhere to medical advice.
Marvin finds that in the throes of an attack, he can't enjoy some of his
usual activities such as a good workout in the gym, or tossing a ball with his
son. The pain just overcomes him, putting everything else on the backburner. He
recalls the time his best friend got married.
"There was no way I could dance at my best friend's wedding, because I was
having a pretty bad gout attack. It was a miracle I could even get my dress
shoes on and limp down the aisle as best man."
Marvin has also had to give up certain beloved foods such as liver and
wine, but finds this a small price to pay for keeping his gout under control.
At the first sign of pain in his toe, Marvin heads for the medicine
cabinet and takes a dose of the gout medication his doctor has prescribed for
this purpose. Marvin figures his gout is a genetic roll of the dice. "My
grandfather had gout," Marvin says, "and he had terrible attacks. I
guess it's hereditary."