Due to festive feasting over the Lunar New Year holiday, the number of people who visited hospital emergency rooms reporting symptoms of acute gout has increased by 10 to 20 percent, doctors said yesterday, adding that more people in their 30s or 40s have experienced the condition in recent years.
A man in his 30s was taken to an emergency room on Friday last week with gout — a type of inflammatory arthritis that causes swelling, redness and severe joint pain — which he said hurt as much as being hit with a hammer.
The attending physician said the man had gout from his 20s, but did not control his diet or stick to a regular drug regime to control uric acid levels in his blood, so his uric acid level elevated rapidly after holiday feasting, causing the pain.
Taipei Medical University Hospital Immunology Department attending physician Chang Chi-ching (張棋禎) said joints most commonly affected by gout are the first metatarsophalangeal joints of big toes and the joints of the instep, ankle or heel, although some people might experience severe pain at other joints.
The majority of people with gout used to be in their 50s or 60s, but now more younger patients are getting treatment for the condition, he said, adding that because many people enjoy eating hot pot in winter, the number of people with gout has increased during the Lunar New Year holiday.
Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital nephrologist Yen Tzung-hai (顏宗海) said the age of onset for gout is gradually becoming younger, citing many cases in recent years of people in their 30s or 40s developing the condition.
Purines — an organic compound found in some foods that breaks down into uric acid — can dissolve in hot pot, so drinking the soup can trigger gout, he said.
“People with gout should avoid eating internal organs, seafood, broth and food high in purines,” Chang said, adding that they should also regularly take medication to control their blood uric acid level and get a blood test at least once every three months.
OFFLINE: People who do not wish to register can get the money from select ATMs using their bank card, ID number and National Health Insurance card number Online registration for NT$6,000 (US$196.32) cash payments drawn from last year’s tax surplus is to open today for eligible people whose national ID or permanent residency number ends in either a zero or a one, the Ministry of Finance said on Monday. Officials from the ministry revealed which days Taiwanese and eligible foreigners would be able to register for the cash payments at a joint news conference with the Ministry of Digital Affairs. Online registration is to open tomorrow for those whose number ends in a two or three; on Friday for those that end in a four or five: on Saturday
Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) officials are investigating why a Starlux Airlines flight to Penang, Malaysia, returned to Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport nearly two hours after takeoff yesterday morning. The airline said in a statement that Flight JX721 to Penang took off from Taoyuan airport at 9:20am. “After the dashboard showed a signal of an abnormality in the hydraulic system, the captain followed standard operating procedures and returned the flight to Taoyuan airport for safety precautions,” the airline said, adding that the flight landed safely at the airport at 11:04am. The airline arranged for the passengers to have lunch after the flight landed and
TECH PROGRAM: A US official said that an important part of the delegation’s trip would be to meet with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co executives The US is to send officials in charge of chip development to Taiwan, Japan and South Korea to promote cooperation in the global semiconductor supply chain, the US Department of Commerce said on Tuesday. Chips Program Office Director Michael Schmidt announced the visit, which marks the first time officials from the office are to visit the three nations since it was set up in September last year. “As semiconductors and technologies continue to evolve, the United States will keep working with allies and partners to develop coordinated strategies to ensure that malign actors cannot use the latest technologies to undermine our collective
WORKING UP AN APPETITE: Sales at the Rueifong Night Market surged 20 to 30 percent, while seats at Liouhe Night Market were packed until 1am, market officials said South Korean pop band Blackpink’s concerts over the weekend in Kaohsiung helped draw large crowds to local night markets, the Kaohsiung City Government said yesterday. The two concerts on Saturday and Sunday at Kaohsiung National Stadium drew more than 90,000 people. The city government offered NT$50 vouchers to spend locally to concertgoers who showed their ticket stubs. Liouhe Night Market (六合夜市) management committee head Chuang Chi-chang (莊其章) said that crowds over the weekend surged at about 10pm and the market remained packed until 1:30am. “Almost all the seats were filled,” Chuang said. Night market stall owners had stocked up in expectation of an increased number