Extremely painful and destructive, gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis with elevated serum uric acid (sUA) a root cause of the disease. Even with the growing incidence of gout, recent research from the Gout & Uric Acid Education Society (GUAES) found that just 16 percent of Americans overall know the target sUA number for gout (6 mg/dL or below) – and just 38 percent of people with gout had their sUA levels checked within the past six months, the timeframe recommended by the American College of Rheumatology. Additionally, the majority of gout sufferers don’t understand the importance of taking daily uric acid-lowering medications, with four in 10 incorrectly believing that they can stop taking medications when they aren’t experiencing flares.
Seeking to increase recognition of the severity of gout and need for routine sUA testing and management, GUAES hosted a professional roundtable discussion on October 3, 2015. The roundtable brought together several experts – rheumatologists, a family care physician, and representatives from the American Association of Diabetes Educators, the National Kidney Foundation and CreakyJoints – to explore how to more effectively educate about gout and improve access to public education and treatment.
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