This week is designated Men’s Heath Week and our posts have addressed male health topics. Today’s post reviews a research study on the relationship between gout and erectile dysfunction (ED).
Gout is the most common cause of inflammatory arthritis among U.S. adults. According to statistics from the Arthritis Foundation, about 4% of U.S. adults suffer from gout. It currently affects over 8 million individuals. It is much more common in men, with men three times more likely than women to develop gout.
A research group in Taiwan initiated a longitudinal cohort study to examine the relationship between gout and subsequent development of erectile dysfunction in men. The study enrolled over 19,000 men, ages 18-64, who were newly diagnosed with gout. The control group included over 77,000 men without gout. The researchers also tracked comorbid risk factors such as chronic renal risk failure, congestive heart failure, depression, diabetes, hypertension, and ischemic heart disease.
The researchers discovered that the participants with gout had a 1.21-fold greater risk of developing ED, compared to those without gout. Worse, subjects that had gout and one of the comorbid risk factors had more than a 2-fold increased risk of developing ED, compared to those without gout or cormorbid risk factors.
This is an important study showing that gout is a significant risk factor in the development of ED in men. Gout is a pro-inflammatory condition, and as seen in other research pro-inflammatory conditions often contribute to ED.
While this study was among Asian males, there is reason to believe the results would be similar in a more diverse population such as seen in the U.S. Consideration of the higher risk of ED in those diagnosed with gout may provide an extra incentive to men to have their gout treated and managed effectively.
“Gout, a physician’s name for the rheumatism of a rich patient.” – Ambrose Bierce
(Source- The Journal of Rheumatology 2015; 42:9)
This blog is a review of published and scientific literature, and should only be used for informational purposes. It does not constitute medical or health advice, nor does it create a physician-patient relationship with anyone. Discuss any health concerns with your personal physician.