Study Finds Over 10% of Australian Aged Care Facility Residents Have Gout

Historically known as “the king of diseases and the disease of kings”, gout is a painful form of inflammatory arthritis.

PCHSS investigators Professor Andrew Georgiou, Professor Johanna Westbrook, and colleagues profiled the health status and demographics of residents of aged care facilities with gout in their paper released on 21 August 2019 in the Australasian Journal on Ageing.

After reviewing electronic records from over 11,000 people aged 65 or older across 68 aged care facilities in Australia, the research team found that just over 10% of the residents suffered from gout.

The three-year study showed growing levels of gout as residents got older as well as differences in levels based on gender. Men were more likely to have gout than women. Moreover, while its prevalence plateaued for women after 85 years of age, it continued to grow for men. The researchers also found that residents with gout were likely to have certain other conditions: the most common were hypertension (71.3%), heart disease (37.9%) and diabetes (33.0%).

Given gout’s association with other conditions, the authors called for further research with patients suffering from gout and other conditions to determine the possible risks from medication interactions.

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