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Am J Med. 2014 Sep;127(9):858-64. doi: 10.1016/j.amjmed.2014.03.039. Epub 2014 Apr 24.

Gout in African Americans.

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Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, Calif. Electronic address:



African Americans have a substantially higher prevalence of risk factors for gout than Caucasians. The aim of the present study was to compare the risk for incident gout among African Americans and Caucasians.


Incidence rates of physician-diagnosed gout among 11,559 Caucasian men and 931 African American men aged 35 to 57 years and at high cardiovascular risk, observed for 7 years as a part of the Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial, were analyzed. Cox regression models were used to account for potential confounding by age, body mass index, diuretic use, hypertension and diabetes status, aspirin and alcohol consumption, and kidney disease.


At baseline, after accounting for risk factors, African Americans had a 14% lower prevalence of hyperuricemia than Caucasians. Incidence of gout increased with increasing prevalence of risk factors in both Caucasians and African Americans. Ethnic disparities in incidence rates were most apparent among those without other risk factors for gout. In separate Cox regression models, after accounting for risk factors, African American ethnicity was associated with a hazard ratio of 0.78 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.66-0.93) for physician-diagnosed gout and 0.88 (95% CI, 0.85-0.90) for incident hyperuricemia. Significant interactions were observed; the association was the strongest (hazard ratio 0.47; 0.37-0.60). These associations were unaffected by addition of serum urate as a covariate or by using alternate case definitions for gout.


After accounting for the higher prevalence of risk factors, African American ethnicity is associated with a significantly lower risk for gout and hyperuricemia compared with Caucasian ethnicity.



African American; Disparities; Gout; Incidence; Uric acid

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