Epidemiology of gout: an update

Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2010 Dec;24(6):811-27. doi: 10.1016/j.berh.2010.10.004.


Gout is the most common inflammatory joint disease in men, characterised by formation of monosodium urate (MSU) crystals in the synovial fluid of joints and in other tissues. The epidemiology of gout provides us with the understanding of the disease distribution and its determinants. In an attempt to update the knowledge on the topic, more recent research reports on the descriptive epidemiology of gout are reviewed in this article. The review describes clinical characteristics and case definitions of gout, including the Rome and New York diagnosis criteria of gout, '1977 American Rheumatism Association (ARA) criteria' and the 10 key propositions of the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) recommendations. Gout incidence, prevalence, morbidity and mortality, geographical variation of the disease, relevant risk factors for both the occurrence and outcome of gout and trends of the disease over time are then described. Difficulties in obtaining the information and data reported are also discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Global Health
  • Gout / blood
  • Gout / diagnosis
  • Gout / epidemiology*
  • Humans
  • Hyperuricemia
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Survival Rate