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Acute Pseudogout Attack

Acute Pseudogout Attack

What is calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease? — Calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease, also called "CPPD disease," is a type of arthritis that can cause sudden attacks of joint pain and swelling. It can also cause long-term joint problems. It is caused by a build-up of a type of calcium crystals (called "calcium pyrophosphate") in the joints. Sudden attacks of CPPD disease used to be called "pseudogout."
The symptoms of CPPD disease are similar to the symptoms of another type of arthritis, called gout. But CPPD disease and gout have different causes.
What are the symptoms of CPPD disease? — People with a flare-up of CPPD disease can get sudden attacks of joint pain, swelling, and warmth – often in the knee. The symptoms can also happen in the ankles, feet, shoulders, elbows, wrists, and hands. Attacks can last for days or weeks.
In some people, CPPD disease leads to long-term osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. It causes pain and stiffness in different joints in the body. Sometimes it also causes joint swelling. Less often, CPPD disease can lead to other joint problems, which can look like other types of arthritis.
Some patients with CPPD disease have very mild symptoms, or no symptoms at all.
Is there a test for CPPD disease? — Yes. To check if your symptoms are caused by CPPD disease, your doctor will do an exam and tests. Tests can include:
Removing fluid from the painful joint – A doctor will put a needle in the joint to remove a small sample of fluid. Then he or she will look at the fluid under a microscope to see if the calcium crystals are present.
X-rays of the painful joints
Blood tests – Your doctor will do blood tests to see if you have a condition that could be causing the calcium crystals to build up.
How is CPPD disease treated? — Treatment often depends on how many joints are involved.
Doctors usually treat people who have 1 or 2 painful joints by:
Removing some fluid from the painful joint
Giving a shot of a medicine into the painful joint
Doctors usually treat people who have more than 2 painful joints with medicines called "NSAIDs." NSAIDs are a large group of medicines that includes ibuprofen (sample brand names: Advil, Motrin), indomethacin (sample brand names: Indocin, Indocid), and naproxen (sample brand name: Aleve). If a person can't take NSAIDs or has too many side effects from NSAIDs, other types of medicines are available.
These treatments help to shorten an attack and ease joint pain and swelling.
Is there anything I can do on my own? — Yes. Doctors usually recommend that people rest their painful joints as much as possible when an attack happens. If your doctor recommends rest, try not to move your painful joint or put weight on it.
Can CPPD disease attacks be prevented? — Sometimes. If you get a lot of attacks, your doctor might prescribe a medicine for you to take every day to help prevent future attacks. This medicine is called colchicine (brand name: Colcrys).
All topics are updated as new evidence becomes available and our peer review process is complete.
This topic retrieved from UpToDate on: Mar 30, 2020.
Topic 16267 Version 8.0
Release: 28.2.2 - C28.105
© 2020 UpToDate, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.

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