Natalie McCormick, PhD

Compared with their White counterparts, gout is more prevalent in Black adults, according to the findings of a study published in JAMA Network Open.

Recent investigations suggest gout and hyperuricemia may be more frequent among Black adults, especially Black women, explains Natalie McCormick, PhD, although pertinent general population, sex-specific data on racial differences in the incidence of gout is inadequate.

To address this knowledge gap, Dr. McCormick and colleagues conducted a cross-sectional analysis using data from the NHANES from 2007-2016, which included adults living in the United States self-reporting Black or White race.

In addition to race, researchers assessed chronic kidney disease (CKD), excess BMI, poor diet, poverty, low education level, diuretic use, and alcohol consumption in a cohort of 18,693 participants. Before and after adjusting for potential socio-clinical risk factors, the primary outcomes were sex- and race-specific occurrence of physician- or clinician-diagnosed gout and hyperuricemia and their differences.

Prevalence of Gout 1.8 Times in Black Women Vs White Women

Dr. McCormick and colleagues observed that the prevalence of gout was 1.8 times higher among Black women than White women and 1.3 times higher among Black men compared with White men. These correlations lessened after adjusting for BMI, diet, poverty, and CKD among women and for CKD and diet among men. In both sexes, after adjusting for all risk factors, the findings were nullified; similar findings were observed for hyperuricemia.

In Black women, the age-standardized incidence of gout was 3.5% (95% CI, 2.7%-4.3%) and in White women, the age-standardized prevalence was 2.0% (95% CI, 1.5%-2.5%; age-adjusted OR, 1.81; 95% CI, 1.29-2.53). In Black men, the incidence was 7.0% (95% CI, 6.2%-7.9%) and in White men, 5.4% (95% CI, 4.7%-6.2%; age-adjusted OR, 1.26; 95% CI, 1.02-1.55).

“These findings suggest that racial disparities in gout may be explained by diet, social determinants of health, and CKD, which could help identify interventions to reduce these disparities,” the study authors wrote. “Culturally informed interventions designed to address adiposity and kidney disease and improve diet quality while recognizing the role of poverty in gout among women could help reduce these disparities.”