What is Uric Acid?
Uric acid (or urate) is an end product of purine metabolism, consisting organic compounds like xanthine oxidase obtained from xanthine and hypoxanthine.
Toxicity level of uric acid is found to be more than xanthine and hypoxanthine. Generally, it is a form of waste product that get mix in the blood after the process of purine degradation.
In this process, enzymes like xanthine oxidase catalysis the production of uric acid and reduction of free radicals.
In general term, excess amount of uric acid in the blood can cause gout and crystals formed in the joints of your body due to impaired peripheral blood flow. The condition lead to complication known as hyperuricemia in medical terms. Opposite to this, when the amount of uric acid excreted by the kidney is less than the required, then it takes to a complication known as hypouricemia. Gout is an disorder that can be described as a arthiritis with high pain. Other than this, excess uric acid can form stones in the kidneys. There are many reasons behind these problems including intake of high purine food products.
Excretes of human consist of a nitrogenous waste as well as uric acid. Further, uric acid is a form of nucleic acid obtained through the metabolism of purines and comes along with urine excreted by humans and other higher primates. In birds, reptiles and dwelling creatures like kangaroo rat, uric acid excretes out in form of dry mass, called feces, and in some mammals it comes in further oxidized form, named allantoin.
Generally, Amount of uric acid ranging between 3.6mg/dL to 8.3 mg/dL found in the blood plasma is considered to be normal. Hyperurecima occurs due to improper functioning of impaired kdney in the body And hypo- and hyper-uricemia happens when the amount present in the body goes above or below this reference range. Similarly, hyperuricosuria and hypouricosuria are two medical complications that happens due to change in uric acid concentrations, above and below the normal range.
Medical Complications Caused due to High Uric Acid
Medical complication like hyperuricemia happens when the amount of uric acid composition increases above the normal level. It causes when the amount of uric acid in the bloodstream exceeds above 6.8 mg/dL, the normal level of uric acid in the blood.
Gout is generally considered as painful arthiritis in which inflammation occurs in the joints of the body. The symptoms start showing out after some years of existence of high uric acid in the body. It can further initiate some other complications like high blood pressure or hypertension.
Gout occurs in the body after some years of uric acid deposition in the tissues . It does not provide any indication for it, till the occurrence of some acute gout attack. Initiating with a mild gout, the condition can further lead to final stage of gout, named advanced gout. The complication initiating stage is known as asymptomatic hyperuricemia, followed by acute flares, intercritical segments, and advanced gout.
Main reason behind gout is excess accumulation of serum uric acid due to high intake of food rich in purines and fructose. Other than this, it can be also occurred by improper excretion of uric acid by the impaired kidneys. Analysis of blood concentration is done to diagnose level of uric acid.
Uricosuric drugs like allopurinol, probenecid, and sulfinpyrazone can help in increasing the amount of uric acid excretion done by the kidneys. The drugs are helpful in obstructing the production of uric acid from xanthine and hypoxanthine. Further, the usage of these medicines, mainly allopurinol, is restricted due to life threatening side-effects it causes on the patients.
Another drug, named Rasburicase, made of uricase enzyme is also used for the same purpose. But, the side-effects from it are again very serious like hemolysis and anaphylaxis.
Uric Acid Stone:
Uric acid stone formed due to extra load to the kidneys in filtering excretes from the body. It is metabolic syndrome causing after obesity and insulin resistane in the body of a person having high level of uric acid. They are formed as a result of chronic diarrhea, animal protein loading, and dehydration.
Stones are formed due to increased load of acid to the kidneys. The condition happens as a result of high intake of dietary acid causing high production of endogenous acid in the liver and muscles.
The excessive load to the kidneys creates a buffer of ammonia excretion, which in turn become insoluble and forms crystal and stones. People having diabetes have high tendency of forming stones in the kidney.
Cases of cardiovascular diseases are sometimes being associated with having high uric acid in the form of antioxidant.Research are still on to dicover that disease occur due to some results of these antioxidants or are side-effects of it.
Diabetes is caused due to insulin resistance, which is associated with hyperuricema. Diabetes type-II, not attached with other complications like obesity, dyslipidemia, and hypertension, is most probably caused due to high uric acid accumulation. Research are still on to confirm the exact causes and relation between two.
Metabolic syndrome: High intake of fructose-base drinks results in medical problems like obesity, diabetes, and plays a pathogenic role alongwith hyperuricemia in metabolic syndromes.
Hyperuricemia and Memory:
There is a relation between high uric acid and memory of a person. As it is seen that people with high uric acid in their blood tend to have congnitive impairment like mild memory loss.
Low Level of Uric Acid or Hypouricemia:
Usually, uric acid acts as an antioxidant or a marker of oxidative stress in the body. Inadequacy of uric acid can turn it into perooxidant causing strokes and atherosclerosis in the body.
When the level of uric acid goes below the minimum level of than normal range, 3mg/dL, it is said to be resulting in a condition called hypouricemia. It further results into multiple sclerosis. Intake of uric acid in the form of inosine can resolve the problem of uric acid deficiency in the body.
Causes of High Uric Acid
Level of uric acid can increase due to some hereditary reasons and high intake of food rich in fructose.
Intake of animal food products, mainly internal organs, causes of hyperuricemia. As, it contains high percentage of purine.
Purines is high in animal products like beef kidneys, meat extracts, game meats, and gravy. And, other food products like sweetbreads, anchovies, and sardines also have high purines in them.
Food products with high fructose like processed foods and soda beverages, or high frructose corn syrup also causes high uric acid in the body.
Causes of Low Uric Acid or Hypouricemia
It causes due to intake of savelamer, a medicine given to treat hyperphosphataemia. It affect more to those patient who also have chronic renal failure alongwith this disease.
Additional Usage of Uric Acid:
Excreta having good amount of uric acid is useful in making agricultural fertilizer, known as guano. In addition to this, it can perform functions of a reflector in species like fireflies.
Diagnosis of Uric Test
Level of uric acid in the body can be detected by doing urine and blood analysis.
Prevention of Uric Acid
High uric acid can be prevented by taking diet containing low-amount of purines. This type of diet can help in reducing the level of uric acid salts in the blood. One should take diet rich in carbohydrate and low in fat to fight against this problem. Exclusion of extra calories can help in maintaining weight of the body, as obesity increases the risk of hyperuricemia in the blood.
One should adopt a habit of eating only 3 ounces of lean meat and should drink a lot of liquid or water to avoid risk of this complication. People who are in initial stage of this problem should completely stop drinking alcohol and try to keep his weight in order. Do lot of walk and excercises to burn out extra calories, this help in proper functioning of kidneys and metabolism process of the system.