Deficiency of uric acid in humans is not so common. Uric acid is one of the organic compounds that is passed through urine. Uric acid has its involvement with metabolism of purine, an important building block of DNA and RNA. Purine is needed to form DNA and RNA. Uric acid is a waste product after purine gets metabolized.
Although a waste product, an optimum amount of uric acid is needed in the body for cellular regeneration and integration. It also acts as an antioxidant. When uric acid is excess in the body the term denoted is hyperuricemia, a cause for painful gout and kidney disease. Hypouricemia is a term that denotes deficiency or low uric acid in body.
This may occur due to decreased production of uric acid in body, decreased reabsorption from the kidney or as a result of treatment with uricase. Uric acid is said to be low when it is less than 2mg/dL in blood.
What Causes Deficiency Of Uric Acid?
Unlike high uric acid in blood, low uric acid level is not common. Uric acid is said to be low when its concentration in blood is less than 2mg/dL. Usually low uric acid may develop in hospitalized patients. It may amount to 2 percent. But in general population only 0.5 percent people are affected with deficiency of uric acid.
Deficiency of uric acid occurs when it is produced less. Low level of uric acid is observed in condition called Wilson’s disease. It is a disease in which too much of copper mineral gets accumulated in important organs of the body. Low uric acid level is also present in Fanconi syndrome, a condition in which certain waste products that are intended to be passed out from urine instead gets reabsorbed back by kidney. Deficiency of vitamin B12, vitamin D and molybdenum is also known to cause low uric acid level in the body.
Low uric acid can be found in diseases such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis, hyperthyroidism, liver disease and SIADH (syndrome of inappropriate anti-diuretic hormone). Steroid medications, salicylates, allopurinol, aspirin, and many other drugs are known to cause low level of uric acid in blood. Deficiency of uric acid is also marked in pregnant women.
Symptoms Of Low Uric Acid Levels
Low level of uric acid is a symptom in itself. The level of uric acid in blood is determined with blood examination. Frequently low uric acid level does not produce any symptoms. Even if symptoms develop they depend on the underlying cause that is responsible for uric acid deficiency. When a person is having low level of uric acid in his blood, his body may experience oxidative stress. This may trigger development of atherosclerosis and stroke.
Reduced uric acid level in Fanconi’s syndrome is associated with bone pain and weakness. Often patient may excrete excess amount of urine when he has low uric acid level in his blood. This will lead to symptoms of dehydration such as dry tongue, weakness, loss of skin elasticity and giddiness etc.
Person having low uric acid due to Wilson’s disease often complain of reduced appetite, body ache, depression, fatigue, tremors, difficult gait, and swallowing problems.
How To Increase Uric Acid Level In Blood?
Most of the time mild to moderate low level of uric acid in blood can be corrected by eating foods that are high in purine. Uric acid is a byproduct that generates after metabolism of purine rich diet. Hence a person having this problem of low uric acid has to eat foods that are high in purines. These patients can eat fish that include hering, mackerel and scallops. Meat of duck, goose, and cow or red meat contains high amount of purines.
Broth, baker’s yeast, bouillon, asparagus, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, mushrooms, peas, and lentils, oatmeal, what germ, beef, pork, cereals, all are rich source of purines. Besides diet that is high in purine containing foods, patient may also require some medicines to raise the level of uric acid. Medicines such as ascorbic acid, aspirin, diuretics, ethambutol, etc can raise the level of uric acid.