This data was collected at baseline and during a follow-up visit after one year. The 10-year CVD risk was calculated using the NL-SCORE, a widely accepted tool for estimating cardiovascular risk in the Netherlands. Statistical tests were performed to compare the baseline and one-year visit data.
The findings of the study revealed a high prevalence of traditional CVD risk factors among the gout patients in secondary care. Surprisingly, even without a previous history of CVD, 19% of the participants were classified as high-risk based on the NL-SCORE. Moreover, the prevalence of CVD increased from 16% to 21% during the one-year follow-up period. These results highlight the vulnerability of gout patients to cardiovascular complications and emphasize the urgent need for proactive management of their CVD risk.
Interestingly, although there was a decrease in total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels after one year, no significant changes were observed in mean body mass index, waist-hip ratio, blood pressure, or NL-SCORE. This suggests that the recommendations provided to patients and general practitioners alone were insufficient to drive overall improvements in traditional CVD risk factors or the estimated 10-year CVD risk.
Based on these findings, the authors concluded that a more prominent role for rheumatologists is necessary to optimize the initiation and management of CVD risk in gout patients. They emphasise the need for rheumatologists to actively intervene and collaborate with other healthcare professionals to develop comprehensive strategies to reduce CVD risk in this population. By taking a more proactive approach, healthcare providers can address the unique cardiovascular risks faced by gout patients and improve their long-term outcomes.
This study contributes to our understanding of the relationship between gout and CVD, emphasizing the importance of comprehensive management of cardiovascular risk factors in gout patients. By implementing targeted interventions and involving rheumatologists more actively, healthcare providers can make significant strides in reducing the burden of CVD among individuals with gout.