Rates of in-hospital cardiac procedures continued to increase in people with gout and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) from 1998-2014, although they decreased for the general population, according to a study published in Therapeutic Advances in Musculoskeletal Disease. Researchers used data from the U.S. National Inpatient Sample (1998- 2014) to examine the frequency of seven common cardiac and orthopedic procedures in hospitalized people with gout and RA compared with the general population. In-hospital cardiac and orthopedic procedures increased for patients with gout and RA with time, while cardiac procedures declined for the general US population. Cardiac procedures were significantly higher in patients with gout versus RA in 1998 (59% higher) and 2014 (92% higher). By 2014, orthopedic procedures became more common than cardiac procedures in patients with gout and RA. The cardiacorthopedic procedure volume difference was significant in 1998 and 2014 for patients with RA. For patients with gout, there were no significant differences noted between cardiac and orthopedic procedures in 1998, but the difference was significant in 2014. In 1998, the rate of orthopedic procedures among patients with gout was significantly lower than that seen for patients with RA (33% lower), but by 2014, the rate was significantly higher than that seen for patients with RA (5% higher). “The widening gap in cardiac procedures between gout and RA and crossing over for orthopedic procedures over time indicates that optimal treatment and treat-to-target implemented in RA treatment may need to be implemented in gout to improve disease outcomes and associated morbidity and resource burden,” the study authors write.