Clinical characteristics and risk factors of ulceration over tophi in patients with gout
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OBJECTIVES: To describe clinical characteristics of ulceration over tophi in patients with gout and determine risk factors associated with ulceration. METHODS: Patients presenting with tophi or ulceration(s) over tophi were prospectively recruited and their clinical characteristics were recorded. Comparison of clinical characteristics and risk factors for ulceration were analyzed between groups. RESULTS: A total of 105 patients were enrolled. Thirty-three patients with ulcerations were older, with prolonged duration with gout and tophi, a higher rate of obesity, greater numbers of tophi, lower levels of glomerular filtration rate (GFR), and higher levels of serum creatinine, erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein. The mean duration of ulceration was 1.63 ± 2.32 months. The ulcerations were mainly located in the ankle (34.21%) and metatarsophalangeal joints (39.47%), with a mean size of 32.37 × 22.76 mm. The majority of ulcerations were categorized as stage I (42.4%) and stage II (51.5%). In univariate regression analysis, age, glucocorticoid overuse, gout duration, tophi duration, tophi number and GFR were associated with ulceration. In the multivariable model, significant differences were demonstrated in glucocorticoid overuse, tophi duration, tophi number. CONCLUSIONS: Gout patients with ulceration(s) over tophi present several different aspects of clinical characteristics compared with those without ulceration. The ulcerations are most commonly seen in feet and they are mainly categorized as stages I and II. Glucocorticoid overuse, prolonged duration with tophi and greater numbers of tophi are risk factors for ulceration over tophi.
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