Gout in women: Differences in risk factors in young and older women

Department of Rheumatology, Counties Manukau District Health Board, Private Bag 93311, Otahuhu, Auckland 1640, New Zealand. .
The New Zealand medical journal 11/2012; 125(1363):39-45.
Source: PubMed


To describe the clinical characteristics of female patients with gout, assess risk factors in this group and to identify any differences between pre- and postmenopausal women with this diagnosis.
We retrospectively reviewed the case records of all women who were seen with gout in a secondary care setting (inpatient and outpatient) at Counties Manukau District Health Board between July 2007 and July 2008. Demographic data, risk factors for gout and information on urate-lowering therapy was collected. A cut-off of less than and equal to 50 years was used to estimate pre-menopausal status.
122/509 (24%) of patients seen with gout were female. Fourteen female patients were less than or equal to 50 years of age; all of these patients were either Maori (43%) or of Pacific Island ethnicity (57%). Comorbidities in those =50 years old were renal impairment (78.6%), hypertension (64.3%), congestive heart failure (43%) and diabetes mellitus (42.9%). Comorbidities in women >50 years old were similar: hypertension (77%), renal impairment (70%), dyslipidemia (53%) and diabetes mellitus (50%). Ischemic heart disease was more common in older women (43% vs 7%), P<0.01. Mean body mass index (BMI) was significantly higher in the younger women (43.5 vs 33.1), P<0.01. Half of all the female patients were on diuretics, and medication used to lower uric acid level was prescribed in 35.7% of women less than and equal to 50 years of age, and 42.59% of women >50 years of age.
Women who develop gout are more likely to be over the age of 50, have other comorbidities and be on diuretics. In comparison, younger women who develop gout have similar risk factors but tended to have a higher body mass index and are more likely to be of Maori or Pacific Island ethnicity.

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