Updated recommendations for managing gout


Clinical question: What are the new treatment options for gout?

Background: The 2006 European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) guidelines recommend that acute flares of gout be treated as early as possible with either oral colchicine, oral corticosteroids, or intra-articular corticosteroids. Experts recommend starting urate-lowering therapy (ULT) only when certain severe clinical features occur, such as recurrent acute attacks and tophi.

Study design: Systematic review.

Setting: EULAR task force members from 12 European countries.

Synopsis: Since the last guidelines, interleukin-1 blockers (IL-1) were found to play a crucial role in crystal-induced inflammation. IL-1, NSAIDs, and corticosteroids should be considered in patients with frequent flares and contraindications to colchicine.

Unlike in the previous guidelines, ULT should be considered from first presentation of gout; for severe disease, serum uric acid (SUA) levels should be maintained at less than 6 mg/dL and less than 5 mg/dL.

Allopurinol is recommended for first-line ULT, and if the SUA target cannot be reached, it should be switched to another xanthine oxidase inhibitor (febuxostat) or a uricosuric or combined with a uricosuric.

Pegloticase is recommended for refractory gout.

Bottom line: The updated 2016 EULAR guidelines recommend new treatment options for gout and updated indications for ULT.

Citation: Richette P, Doherty M, Pascual E, et al. 2016 updated EULAR evidence-based recommendations for the management of gout [published online ahead of print July 25, 2016]. Ann Rheum Dis. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2016-209707.

Dr. Gummalla is an assistant professor at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and a hospitalist at University of Miami Hospital and Jackson Memorial Hospital.

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