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Case report and disease’ review: tophaceous gouty arthropathy

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Gout is a common inflammatory and metabolic disorder of the joints and probably other organs, especially the kidneys. It has a definitive genetic and environmental background, making it mainly a disease of middle-aged and elderly males, infrequently inflicting postmenopausal and elderly women who usually have arterial hypertension, renal impairment, and usually on diuretics.

Excessive tissue urate turnover and persistent hyperuricemia is the hallmark of the disease. A typical algorithm is characterized by acute attack of the monoarticular joint, the metatarsophalangeal joint of the big toe often is involved (podagra), but tarsal joints, ankles, and knees might also be affected.

Chronic asymmetric polyarticular arthritis that might be confused with classical Rheumatoid Arthritis might be encountered in some patients and in recurrent and relapsing diseases. In this setting, many organs and tissues are affected by the deposition of monosodium urate (MSU) crystals other than synovium, bursae, tendons, and periarticular tissues. The risk of involvement of renal interstitium or uric acid nephrolithiasis has a particular interest in the course of the disease.

By the inflammation and collection of MSU crystals in form of tophi that might involve many tissues and occasionally the pinna of the ears, this kind of tophaceous gout is rarely observed nowadays, especially in our community (Middle East region). The patient who is presented here has exhibited acute attack on the top of chronic tophaceous gouty arthritis.

The recent epidemiologic reports revealed that gout has given different results. This wide variation is attributed to the population studied and methods employed, but overall, for the prevalence of <1% to 6.8% and an incidence of 0.58-2.89 per 1,000 person per year. The most noticeable risks for gout are obesity and associated metabolic syndrome (insulin resistance, hypertension, dyslipidaemia), dietary factors, high fructose-containing diet, high purine diet (red meat, internal organ’s meat ,seafood) high consumption of alcohol, and exclusively beer ( as in our patient’s case ), a wide variety of disorders that are characterized by high urate turnover like myeloproliferative disorders, neoplasms, psoriasis, haemolytic anaemias, medications , to under-secretion of urate like renal insufficiency.


Gout, diuretics, women, tophaceous