According to WebMD, gout is not fatal. As a type of arthritis, it's a symptom of other problems within the body, such as high levels of uric acid in the blood. The uric acid in high amounts can form crystals on the joints, causing pain and affecting mobility.
WebMD states that high alcohol intake, being overweight and eating too much meat all contribute to higher levels of uric acid. Gout-related pain usually occurs at night and includes inflammation and pain in the big toe or other joints. A doctor's visit is recommended even if the symptoms cease as elevated levels of uric acid that caused the gout symptoms can still harm the joints.