Difference Between Gout and Turf Toe (With Table)

Injuries in general cause pain and the pain caused by the joint injuries can be close to unbearable. These injuries not only cause pain but also cause mobility issues and cause damage to other body parts as well. Gout and Turf Toe are two such injuries in the joints.

Gout vs Turf Toe

The difference between Gout and Turf Toe is that Gout is caused due to internal changes, and Turf Toe is due to an external force. There are similarities between some of their symptoms. However, the two are different types of injuries caused by different reasons, which require different treatments and medications.

Gout refers to various conditions which are caused by the buildup of uric acid. Urate crystals are formed around tissues when an individual’s body does not excrete uric acid. These urate crystals typically form around the joints. Such a buildup causes joint pain and arthritis. Treatment depends on the type of Gout.

Turf Toe is a condition where an individual’s big toe is bent too far towards the top of the feet. This can result in a toe sprain or surrounding ligaments. In this condition, at least one of the joints that connect with the toe to the rest of the foot is injured.

Comparison Table Between Gout and Turf Toe

Parameters of ComparisonGout Turf Toe
Injury typeIt is a type of arthritis that is also very painful.It is a type of metatarsophalangeal joint sprain.
CauseThe main cause is the buildup of urate crystals. The main cause is an outside force.
SymptomsThe uric acid crystals which are formed on the joints or soft tissue make it difficult for a person to move joints and cause pain.The hyperextension of the toe and all or some of the joints and ligaments cause pain and difficulty in mobility.
TreatmentIt can be treated with changes in lifestyle, diet, exercise, and a few medications.It cannot be treated with lifestyle and diet changes alone. The treatment varies on the injury and symptoms. Medication is necessary for pain relief. 
OccurrenceGout injury is predominantly found in men.Turf toe is predominantly found in sportsmen, athletics, gymnasts, and martial arts students. 

What is Gout?

Gout can be defined as a metabolic disease that is a result of the accumulation of uric acid or urate crystals around the joint tissues. The initial symptoms include swelling around the joint, severe pain, and even redness. These typically begin at the base of the toe. This is an injury that predominantly affects men. The various symptoms of gout include sudden and severe pain, which can be long-lasting, difficulty in the mobility of joints, swelling, and redness. This can also result in an increase in uric acid levels, protein levels, kidney stones, kidney inflammation, and even high blood pressure.

A congenital defect in the purine metabolism or a decreased renal excretion of the uric acid is the cause of Gout. Another major reason for this condition is excessive consumption of alcohol, meat, and an unhealthy lifestyle. If the Purines processed into uric acid are not excreted in the urine, they accumulate in the form of crystals. They typically accumulate in the tissues of the joints, soft parts of the ear, toes, and elbows. These crystals also cause inflammation. It can be diagnosed easily through blood checkups, X-Rays, or ultrasonography. It can be treated even with diet and lifestyle changes.  

What is Turf Toe?

Turf toe can be described as a painful injury or connective tissue rupture in the area surrounding the metatarsophalangeal joint of the big toe. It is a sprain that is caused by a sudden external force. The pain can be normal while simply walking but severe during a workout, climbing, or running. The pain is mostly on the sides of the big toe, and swelling appears in severe cases. Mostly the common causes of turf toe injury include an increase in pain from the previous sprain, difficulty in joint mobility, unsuitable worm up and terrain surface, weakness, muscle fatigue, and even inappropriate footwear.

This injury is most commonly caused to sportsmen, gymnasts, and athletes. After any sprain or simple-looking injury, it is recommended that immediate first aid steps should be taken. These steps include applying ice, applying bandage, rest, immobilization, anti-inflammatory spray, and painkillers if the pain is more. The treatment depends on the condition. A proper examination is required for confirmation of the injury. Radiography is done to examine more serious conditions. It is popularly mistaken for gout. In case proper treatment is given immediately after diagnosis, then recovery can be quicker. The popular methods include massage and physiotherapy

Main Differences Between Gout and Turf Toe

  1. Gout is a type of arthritis that is also very painful. Turf Toe is a type of metatarsophalangeal joint sprain.
  2. The main cause for Gout is the buildup of urate crystals. The main cause for Turf Toe is an outside force.
  3. In the case of Gout, the uric acid crystals which are formed on the joints or soft tissue make it difficult for a person to move joints and cause pain. In the case of Turf Toe, the hyperextension of the toe and all or some of the joints and ligaments cause pain and difficulty in mobility.
  4. Gout can be treated with changes in lifestyle, diet, exercise, and a few medications. Turf Toe cannot be treated with lifestyle and diet changes alone. The treatment varies on the injury and symptoms. Medication is necessary for pain relief. 
  5. Gout injury is predominantly found in men. Turf toe is predominantly found in sportsmen, athletics, gymnasts, and martial arts students.

Conclusion

Both Gout and Turf toe are injuries that cause severe pain, particularly in the joints. These conditions cause difficulty in the movement of joints. If not treated on time can cause furthermore serious damage. Both of them create confusion and are often mistaken for one another.

However, both of them are different from each other in different ways. Gout and Turf Toe are caused by different reasons, have different symptoms, and have different symptoms. Both of them also occur in different groups of people. So it is important to properly diagnose and avail correct treatment.

References

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0899707114002794
  2. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/art.1780200320
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