Risk factors





  • Genetic factors : Family history of gout.


  • Obesity : Overweight people have a tendency to develop hyperuricemia (increased uric acid level in blood) and gout because increased food intake causes increased production of uric acid.


  • Sex : More common in men and is seen in women usually after menopause.


  • Excessive intake of alcohol : Alcohol interferes with the excretion of uric acid from the body.


  • Eating food rich in purine like liver, kidney, sweetbread, dried beans and peas, anchovies.


  • Decreased excretion of uric acid as from :
    • Drugs like diuretics, salicylates, cyclosporine, levodopa, aspirin, nicotinic acid.
    • Exposure to lead in the environment.
    • Hyperparathyroidism
    • Myxedema (condition occurring as a result of under functioning of thyroid gland).
    • Down’s syndrome
    • Any condition resulting in lactic acidosis like starvation, vomiting, toxemia of pregnancy.


  • Increased production of uric acid as from :
    • Myeloproliferative disorders e.g. polycythaemia vera (increased red blood cells).
    • Chronic lymphatic leukemia (blood cancer).
    • Psoriasis (a skin disorder which is characterized by reddish patches covered by silvery scales).