Laboratory test and imaging testing are typically required to establish a diagnosis since pseudogout symptoms might resemble those of gout and other kinds of arthritis.
- Blood test: Blood testing can screen for mineral abnormalities that have been associated to pseudogout as well as thyroid and parathyroid gland issues. It is not possible to diagnose CPPD only from a blood test.
- Imaging test: Joint deterioration and crystal deposits in the cartilage of the joint can frequently be seen on X–rays or CT scan of the affected joint.
- Anthrocentesis: The healthcare provider may take a sample of fluid using a needle in order to examine the fluid in the affected joint for crystals. Joint aspiration (arthrocentesis) is the term for this technique. Removing the fluid can furthermore assist in lowering joint pressure, which could help in easing discomfort.
An appropriate diagnosis must be done since various crystal kinds in the joint can be the root of other types of arthritis. The appropriate treatment can then be recommended by the healthcare provider.
While there is no known cure for pseudogout, a combination of treatments can be employed to alleviate pain and enhance joint function. The purpose of treatment is to reduce pain and inflammation while avoiding periodic attacks that can result in severe pain and joint damage.
- Medications: The healthcare provider could advise the following if over–the–counter painkillers are insufficient:
- Colchicine: For CPPD attacks, colchicine is typically administered. This gout medication’s low–dose tablets work well for treating pseudogout as well. The patient can be instructed to take colchicine every day as a preventative precaution if they get pseudogout attacks often.
- Nonsteroidal anti–inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs): NSAIDs consist of indomethacin and naproxen. NSAIDs, especially in elderly persons, might result in gastrointestinal bleeding and impaired renal function. Certain people, such as those with poor renal function, blood problems, stomach or digestive diseases, heart diseases, and certain other health issues, cannot use these medications.
- Corticosteroids: The healthcare provider may advise using corticosteroid medications, such as prednisone, to decrease inflammation and stop the attack if the patient is unable to take NSAIDs or colchicine. Corticosteroid usage for an extended period of time can weaken bones, result in cataracts, diabetes, and weight gain.
- Joint drainage: An injured joint’s pain and pressure can be reduced by draining some of the joint fluid. To remove the fluid, a needle is utilized. The procedure also aids in the removal of certain crystals from the joint. Then a corticosteroid and numbing drug are injected into the joint to reduce pain and swelling.
- Lifestyle and home remedies: In the event of flare–ups of pseudogout, home remedies may be helpful. Examples include the following:
- Nonsteroidal anti–inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs): NSAIDs that are available over–the–counter, such ibuprofen and naproxen sodium, are frequently beneficial.
- Resting the joint: The patient is instructed not to try using the injured joint for a few days.
- Ice compress: Using cold compresses can help lessen the inflammation brought on by flare-ups.