General practitioners' perspectives on the management of gout: a qualitative study

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Many quantitative studies globally have identified suboptimal management of gout.


To explore management of gout from the perspective of general practitioners (GPs), while identifying the barriers and possible strategies for improvement.

Study design

This descriptive qualitative study used semistructured interviews with 14 purposely selected GPs from four separate general practices in Townsville. The questions focused on management strategies, practicalities in managing gout, barriers and possible strategies to improve management.


Indomethacin was commonly reported to be used in acute gout with progression to allopurinol after the acute stage had subsided. There were differences with the initial allopurinol dose and follow-up periods. GPs reported lack of patient adherence to allopurinol and lifestyle modifications, mainly due to lack of education. Most suggested the need for allied health input and improved patient education.


Tailor-made plan in terms of education and lifestyle advice could help adherence to gout management.

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