Management of gout in general practice--a systematic review

Clin Rheumatol. 2015 Jan;34(1):9-16. doi: 10.1007/s10067-014-2783-z. Epub 2014 Sep 17.


This systematic review aims to summarise published evidence that assessed the management of gout in regard to the following: prescription of urate lowering therapy (ULT), monitoring of serum urate levels (sUA) and allopurinol dosing in patients with renal impairment, lifestyle advice and acute management of gout. Studies investigating the management of gout in general practice (GP) were identified by searching PubMed and Scopus databases. To be eligible for inclusion, studies had to be focused on the GP setting alone. Studies were also excluded if they examined diagnosis without exploring management of gout. Editorials and reviews were excluded. A total of nine studies were identified. Eight studies explored the proportion of gout patients currently on ULT. Six out of the eight studies revealed that ULT was prescribed in less than 50 % of gout patients. Four studies considered the monitoring of sUA levels in gout patients. The results were generally similar throughout studies indicating sub-optimal management. Only two studies examined the monitoring of sUA levels specifically in patients who were prescribed ULT. The two studies showed 28 and 38 % of patients on ULT had their sUA levels monitored. Two studies examined the dosing of allopurinol in renally impaired patients and revealed that 74-78 % of renally impaired patients had an appropriate allopurinol dose of less than 300 mg. This systematic review suggests that gout is sub-optimally managed in general practice. However, more studies with a larger sample size focusing on active patients are required to provide more definitive evidence.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Disease Management
  • General Practice
  • Gout / blood
  • Gout / drug therapy
  • Gout / therapy*
  • Gout Suppressants / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Life Style*
  • Uric Acid / blood*


  • Gout Suppressants
  • Uric Acid