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Ther Adv Musculoskelet Dis. 2012 Apr;4(2):121-31. doi: 10.1177/1759720X11432559.

Treatment and management of pseudogout: insights for the clinician.


Pseudogout and the associated calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate (CPPD)- crystal-related arthropathies are common conditions that present particular management problems in clinical practice as they often affect older patients with multiple medical comorbidities. The epidemiology, metabolic and endocrine disease associations, and routine investigations used in the diagnostic workup are briefly reviewed. Current treatment approaches that are mainly directed at relieving the symptoms of joint inflammation are outlined. Unlike gout, there are no agents available that have been shown to decrease crystal load in CPPD-related joint disease. Recent novel insights into the pathogenesis of crystal-induced joint inflammation and subsequent joint degeneration are also discussed. The potential of colchicine as a prophylactic agent in managing recurrent attacks and the likely mechanisms of its effects on the NACHT, LRR and PYD domains-containing protein 3 (NALP-3) inflammasome of the innate immune system are highlighted. The use of agents that directly target the inflammasome, in particular drugs which inhibit the interleukin 1 pathway, in the treatment of severe, refractory pseudogout is also discussed. Finally, there is particular emphasis on the likely pathogenic role of CPPD crystal deposition in degenerative joint disease and the use of targeted anticrystal therapies as potential disease-modifying drugs.


CPPD; colchicine; crystal; inflammasome; interleukin-1; osteoarthritis; pseudogout

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