SAN DIEGO, April 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Getting the word out about preventing and treating gouty arthritis has new urgency with the number of Americans suffering from this form of arthritis now topping the 8 million mark. If left untreated, gout can be disabling. Gout is also associated with other serious health conditions, making it a complex diagnosis and treatment challenge for physicians. In addition to the core patient demographic of men age 40 plus, post-menopausal women are at increased risk.
To help bridge the information gap, for the first time, the nonprofit Gout & Uric Acid Education Society (GUAES) is reaching out to primary care providers during the American College of Physicians Internal Medicine 2011 conference in San Diego April 7-9, booth 1534.
What is Gout?
Gout is caused by an accumulation of sodium urate crystals in the joints and other tissues. These crystals form when there is an abnormally high level of uric acid in the blood (a condition known as hyperuricemia).
"Early diagnosis and treatment, along with an understanding of co morbidities is critical in helping patients gain control of this disease and continue to live an active lifestyle," said N. Lawrence Edwards, MD, GUAES chairman. He noted that serum urate is not part of the metabolic blood work panel but that elevated uric acid can be a precursor to gout. A uric acid level of 6.0 mg/DL or below is desirable.
At the Internal Medicine 2011 conference, GUAES representatives will provide peer reviewed information sources on the latest research, diagnosis and treatment solutions for this potentially disabling form of arthritis. Complimentary patient educational tools will also be available.
Medical professionals can access GUAES resources and pose questions to the organization's medical experts online by visiting www.gouteducation.org or by visiting the GUAES booth.
More About Gout
Gout, which affects approximately 8.3 million Americans, is one of the most painful forms of arthritis and the most common form of inflammatory arthritis among adults. Patients describe the pain of an attack as one that rivals the fracture of long bones. Gout causes sudden intense pain and swelling in the joints. Following their first attack of gout, approximately 60 percent of patients will experience another attack within the first year. If gout is left untreated it can lead to permanent joint damage and destruction of tissue.
About the Gout & Uric Acid Education Society and Gout Awareness Day
Formed in September 2005, the Gout & Uric Acid Education Society has a comprehensive patient education brochure, as well as a user-friendly Web site for patients, caregivers, family members and healthcare providers. For more information about gout and the Gout & Uric Acid Education Society, please visit www.gouteducation.org.
SOURCE Gout & Uric Acid Education Society