A risk factor is something that increases your likelihood of getting a disease or condition.
It is possible to develop gout with or without the risk factors listed below. However, the more risk factors you have, the greater your likelihood of developing gout. If you have a number of risk factors, ask your doctor what you can do to reduce your risk.
Risk factors for gout include:
Although gout can occur in men and women of any age, it most often occurs in men over age 40. Gout usually does not affect women until after menopause.
Lifestyle factors that increase the risk of gout include:
There appears to be a genetic component to gout. Six percent to eighteen percent of people who have gout have relatives who also have gout. In a small number of people, the risk of gout is increased by an enzyme defect that interferes with the way the body breaks down purines.
Certain medications and vitamins can increase the risk of gout. These include:
American Academy of Family Physicians website. Available at: http://www.aafp.org/online/en/home.html .
American College of Rheumatology website. Available at: http://www.rheumatology.org/ .
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases website. Available at: http://www.niams.nih.gov/ .
The Merck Manual of Medical Information. 17th ed. Simon and Schuster, Inc; 2000.
12/3/2010 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance : Choi HK, Willett W, Curhan G. Fructose-rich beverages and risk of gout in women. JAMA. 2010;304(20):2270-2278.
Last reviewed September 2011 by Rosalyn Carson-DeWitt, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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