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Thursday
Jul282011

Number of Americans Suffering with Gout Is on the Rise

Creatas Images/Thinkstock(BOSTON) -- Gout, a type of inflammatory arthritis that is caused by the formation of uric acid crystals in the joints, causing pain and swelling, appears to be on the rise, according to a new study published Thursday in Arthritis & Rheumatism.

By comparing data from two national surveys -- one from 1988-1994 and the other from 2007-2008, researchers at Boston University School of Medicine found that about 4 percent of the U.S. population, or some 8.3 million adults, now suffer from gout, with the condition being more common in men than in women.

This latest rate is a 1.2 percent increase from 20 years ago.

The authors of the study also found that this rise in gout rates is linked to the rise in obesity and hypertension among U.S. adults, and so they conclude that “improvements in managing modifiable risk factors, such as obesity and hypertension, could help prevent further escalation of gout...among Americans.”

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