Gout and Cardiovascular Risk?

Gout and Cardiovascular Risk?


When I think back to medical school, I can recall a professor mentioning that gout used to be called, “the disease of kings.”

The reason that it was described as such, is that some of the risk factors for gout include the consumption of too much alcohol and meat.

Simply think of a king feasting on steak and imbibing on red wine. Though gout most commonly affects the large toe with symptoms including sharp pain, redness, swelling, and tenderness, it may also affect other joints including your foot, ankle, or knee.

In addition, to the traditional concern over joint damage that may be caused by the deposition of uric acid crystals in your joints that causes the symptoms of gout, new research suggests that there may be additional consequences of gout.

Gout and Cardiovascular Risk:

A very recent study published in the journal, Angiology, highlights the association between gout, uric acid, and peripheral artery disease (PAD).

In particular, the study authors concluded that a self-reported history of gout is associated with a modest, but statistically significant risk of PAD (Baker et al, 2007). Previous research by the same author (Baker et al, 2005), already highlights the association between high serum uric acid levels and cardiovascular disease.

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  1. Baker JF, Schumacher HR, Krishnan E. Serum uric acid level and risk for peripheral arterial disease: analysis of data from the multiple risk factor intervention trial. Angiology. 2007 Aug-Sep;58(4):450-7.
  2. Baker JF, Krishnan E, Chen L, et al: Serum uric acid and cardiovascular disease: recent developments, and where do they leave us? Am J Med 118:816-826,2005.
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