Gout is an inflammatory disease, causing acute arthritis and high blood levels of uric acid. It causes deposition of monosodium urate crystals in one or more joints of the legs, soft tissue deposits, kidney stones and nephropathy (kidney damage). The most common clinical symptom is the painful swelling of joints.
Gout and hyperuricemia (high blood uric acid) are associated with high intakes of red meat, fructose, beer, and other forms of alcohol, as well as genetic factors. Gout is more common in men and related to diabetes, hypertension, obesity, chronic kidney disease, and cardiovascular diseases. Additionally, gout has been previously reported as a risk factor for heart attack even in young people and those without cardiovascular risk factors.
There is increasing evidence for an association between gout, hyperuricemia, and cancer. High uric acid levels are associated with high rates of cancer, also. The high rates of cell breakdown seen in cancer are known to cause hyperuricemia. This review was written to compile evidence from three separate studies involving 50,358 subjects in regard to gout and the risk of cancer. The risk of several types of cancers was also studied, including digestive cancer, urological cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, and brain cancer.
The overall analysis showed an increased risk of cancer in patients with gout. As well, there was an increased risk of urological and of digestive cancers in gout. There was a moderate increased risk of lung cancer in patients with gout, but no increased risk of breast or of brain cancer was seen in patients with gout.
CONCLUSION: This study supports the belief that there is a connection between gout and cancer, especially of urological cancers, digestive cancers, and lung cancer.