A study of the association between hyperuricemia and knee osteoarthritis in the coastal Indian population

Sujit Jos, Rajeev Anand, Nawfal Nazar, Renju Jose


Background: Hyperuricemia and knee osteoarthritis are common problems that affect the aging population and they have an increasing prevalence with obesity and hypertension. Epidemiologic and immunological studies have shown a possible relation between the two conditions. Uric acid is a common factor found in association with the evaluation and treatment of osteoarthritis. There are serious therapeutic implications, particularly in using traditional gout medications, for use in osteoarthritis treatment is to be explored in detail. Our diet contains a good amount of purine containing food stuffs. The common items which increase our uric acid levels are red meat, all alcoholic beverages, seafood and shellfish. Previous studies have shown an association between serum uric acid and generalized osteoarthritis, but with the limited studies on the evidence of association between serum uric acid and knee joint osteoarthritis. This study aims to know the association between serum uric acid levels and osteoarthritis of knee joint.

Methods: This is a Cross-sectional analytical study including eight hundred and thirty patients (461 males, 369 females) in a population screening during a patient education program on joint pains. Their serum uric acid level, total count, differential count, erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), height, weight, blood pressure, BMI and standing radiographs of affected knees were obtained. The presence of radiographic osteoarthritis of the knee was analyzed using Kellgren-Lawrence system. The patients were divided into cohorts with hyperuricemia and osteoarthritis and compared with the subjects without either of the problems.

Results: Isolated knee joint osteoarthritis is present in 183 subjects (22%), hyperuricemia was present in 154 subjects (18.55%). There is a significant positive association present between isolated knee joint osteoarthritis and the highest level of serum uric acid (adjusted odd’s ratio-2.24, 95% confidence interval-1.57-2.94). There is a significant positive association between high serum uric acid levels and progression of the knee joint osteoarthritis (highest level versus lowest level of serum uric acid odd’s ratio-1.38, 95% confidence interval-0.96-2.74).

Conclusions: It is concluded that knee joint osteoarthritis and its progression are associated with hyperuricemia.


Diet for hyperuricemia, Hyperuricemia, Knee joint, Osteoarthritis, Serum uric acid

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