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Gout Linked to Higher Risk of Dementia

Gout Linked to Higher Risk of Dementia

A new study finds that gout is associated with a 17 to 20 percent higher risk of dementia in the elderly.

A common condition, gout is caused by deposits of crystals of uric acid (also known as urate) in the joints, which leads to inflammation. Symptom flares can be unpredictable and debilitating, developing over a few hours and causing severe pain in the joints.

Treating gout includes lowering uric acid levels, although maintaining too low a level is a concern because uric acid is thought to protect the brain, researchers note.

“Our study found a considerable increased risk of dementia associated with gout in the elderly,” said Dr. Jasvinder Singh, professor of medicine and epidemiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. “Further study is needed to explore these relationships and understand the pathogenic pathways involved in this increased risk.”

Presented at the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR 2018), the study included 1.23 million Medicare beneficiaries, of which 65,325 had dementia.

In an analysis that was adjusted for various potential confounding variables, including demographics, comorbidities, and commonly used medications, the study’s results showed that gout is independently associated with a significantly higher risk of dementia.

That association was larger in older age groups, females, African Americans and people with higher medical comorbidity, according to the researchers.

Source: European League against Rheumatism (EULAR)

Gout Linked to Higher Risk of Dementia

Janice Wood

Janice Wood is a long-time writer and editor who began working at a daily newspaper before graduating from college. She has worked at a variety of newspapers, magazines and websites, covering everything from aviation to finance to healthcare.

APA Reference
Wood, J. (2018). Gout Linked to Higher Risk of Dementia. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 17, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2018/06/17/gout-linked-to-higher-risk-of-dementia/136244.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 17 Jun 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 17 Jun 2018
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