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  • James Butler

Gout Flare-ups Linked to Increased Venous Thromboembolism Risk Within a Month

As a gout sufferer, it is crucial to understand the risks associated with the condition. Recent research published in Arthritis & Rheumatology has uncovered a significant increase in venous thromboembolism (VTE) risk within 30 days of a gout flare-up.

Gout, a form of inflammatory arthritis, has previously been linked to a higher risk of VTE compared to the general population. However, the temporal relationship between gout flare-ups and VTE had not been explored until now.

Researchers from the University of Nottingham analyzed electronic primary care records from the Clinical Practice Research Datalink in the United Kingdom, focusing on patients aged 18 or older who had experienced a gout flare at least one year after their last general practice visit. The team then examined the relationship between VTE and gout flare-ups.

A gout flare was defined as a gout-specific diagnostic code, a prescription of anti-inflammatory drugs on the same date as a consultation for a gout flare, or a hospitalization with a primary diagnosis of gout. The researchers also considered patients to have experienced VTE if they had a primary care diagnosis of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or pulmonary embolism (PE), and had a prescription for an anticoagulation drug, were hospitalized with DVT or PE as a primary diagnosis, experienced a fatal VTE episode, or died within 30 days of a diagnosis of DVT or PE.

The study included 314 patients and discovered a significant transient association between gout flare-ups and VTE within the subsequent 90 days, with most of the excess risk occurring in the first 30 days immediately after a gout flare consultation or hospitalization.

This new information highlights the importance of counseling gout patients about the increased risk of VTE following a flare-up. It is crucial for patients to remain well hydrated and active during the 30 days after the flare-up to minimize the risk. By staying informed and taking necessary precautions, gout sufferers can manage their condition more effectively and reduce the risk of VTE.

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