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Glucosamine: Can it worsen gout symptoms?By Mayo Clinic staff
Original Article: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/gout/AN00983
- With Mayo Clinic rheumatologist
April Chang-Miller, M.D.read biographyclose window
April Chang-Miller, M.D.April Chang-Miller, M.D.
Dr. April Chang-Miller is board certified in internal medicine and rheumatology and is a consultant in the Division of Rheumatology at Mayo Clinic in Arizona.
Dr. Chang-Miller's primary field is rheumatology with special interests in inflammatory joint diseases called seronegative spondyloarthropathies, such as ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis. She also cares for patients with rheumatoid arthritis and polymyalgia rheumatica.
The New York City native is a graduate of the Yale School of Medicine. Dr. Chang-Miller joined the Mayo Clinic staff in Rochester, Minn., in 1991, and in 2002 she relocated to Mayo Clinic in Arizona. She is a fellow in the American College of Rheumatology and has been on the board of directors of the Arthritis Foundation North Central Chapter.
Glucosamine: Can it worsen gout symptoms?
My husband takes glucosamine supplements to treat gout. But I'm wondering if glucosamine, which contains shellfish, may actually worsen gout symptoms?
from April Chang-Miller, M.D.
Taking glucosamine isn't likely to have any effect on gout — either good or bad.
Gout is a form of arthritis that's characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness and tenderness in joints. Gout is caused by deposits of uric acid crystals in a joint. Uric acid is a waste product formed from the breakdown of purines — substances found naturally in the body and in certain foods, including shellfish and organ meats.
Typically, glucosamine is made synthetically or from the outer shells (exoskeletons) of shellfish — not from shellfish meat. Because glucosamine doesn't contain purines, it isn't likely to increase uric acid levels or aggravate gout symptoms. Likewise, there's no clinical evidence that glucosamine helps prevent or treat gout either.
- Gout. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS). http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Gout/default.asp. Accessed Oct. 21, 2010.
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