The UK has one of the highest rates of gout in Europe, but only a third of long-term cases are on urate-lowering therapies (ULTs), finds a new study.
Researchers found rising rates of gout, with the population of patients with long-term gout in the UK increasing 64% from 1997 to 2012.
Currently around one in 40 adults recorded as having the condition, but the study also found only a quarter of newly diagnosed cases prescribed ULTs within one year of diagnosis.
The study looked at UK data and found men between the ages of 35 and 39 were 5.5 times more likely to be diagnosed with gout than women of the same age. New incidences of gout were highest amongst the 80 to 84 age group for bothh genders, and diagnoses were rare amongst those under 20.
The paper concludes: ‘Collectively, these results reflect widespread lack of knowledge of gout and poor alignment with current recommendations of best practice within the UK.’
It adds: ‘Being that gout is the only chronic arthritis for which there is curative treatment, the use of ULT would seem a useful indicator of standard of care.’