EMBARGO lifted-Hold for release until Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011, 4 p.m. CT American College of Rheumatology
Gout —the buildup of uric acid crystals in and around joints _ can be intensely painful and even disabling. It is important to catch the condition early.
A Mayo Clinic study has found that X-ray images known as CT
scans can help confirm gout in patients who are suspected of having the painful condition but receive negative results from traditional tests. The type of CT scan researched, dual-energy computed tomography, is also valuable for diagnosing people who cannot be tested with the typical method of drawing fluid from joints, researchers found. The study is being presented at the American College of Rheumatology annual scientific meeting in Chicago.
Gout has historically been portrayed as a disease of kings,
but in modern times, our diets have caught up with those of royalty, and gout now afflicts people from all walks of life. Men are likelier to develop gout, but women’s risk rises after menopause, when their uric acid levels approach those of men. Treatment usually involves medication and dietary changes.
Physicians traditionally check for gout by using a needle to draw fluid from affected joints and examining the fluid for uric acid crystals. Dual-energy CT scans were recently modified to detect the crystals, and the study found the scans “very accurate’’ in identifying patients with gout, says lead researcher Tim Bongartz, M.D., a rheumatologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.
Click on this to view the release ACR 2011 Dr Bongartz Mayo Clinic Gout Study
Journalists: The following video clips are available for download and use in your post-embargo stories
What kind of patients should participate in this test ? MOV
What is the take away message for patients? MOV
What is the take away message for researchers? MOV