Gout is a common cause of inflamed joints and arthritis. It is much more common in men than women, affecting about one per cent of adults in the UK. Some research suggests that it is becoming more common. Effective treatment exists and gout is considered to be one of the few curable forms of arthritis.
Recently, bodies such as the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) and the British Society for Rheumatology (BSR) have produced recommendations advising doctors how to treat gout. The recommendations cover a wide range of areas including treatment of acute attacks of gout, the importance of life-style factor measures such as diet, alcohol and weight, and how gout should be treated in the longer term. However, recent research shows that these recommendations are frequently not followed.