It can be caused by either an over-production of uric acid by the body or the under-elimination of uric acid by the kidneys. High levels of uric acid in the blood can cause solid crystals to form within joints. This causes a painful condition called gout.
Factors that may cause a high uric acid level in your blood include:
Drinking too much alcohol
Niacin, or vitamin B-3
Purine-rich diet — organ meat, game meat, anchovies, herring, gravy, dried beans, dried peas, mushrooms and other foods
Renal insufficiency — inability of the kidneys to filter waste
Tumor lysis syndrome — a rapid release of cells into the blood caused by certain cancers or by chemotherapy for those cancers