The FDA has approved lesinurad (Zurampic) – to be used in combination with allopurinol (Zyloprim) or febuxostat (Uloric) — for the treatment of hyperuricemia associated with gout. Lesiunard is the first in a new class of drugs called selective uric acid reabsorption inhibitors (SURIs) to be approved in the United States.
It represents an important advance in treatment for people whose gout is not controlled by current medications, says Jasvinder Singh, MD, a rheumatologist at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and one of the investigators in the clinical trials on which the approval of lesinurad is based. Gout is a painful and potentially debilitating form of inflammatory arthritis that affects up to 4 percent of American adults.
Lesinurad works in a novel way to lower blood levels of uric acid, a bodily waste product responsible for gout. When uric acid reaches high levels in the blood (hyperuricemia), the acid can leak out and deposit as crystals in the joints and other tissues, resulting in intense pain and swelling. Early in the disease course, gout attacks usually occur in one joint, often the big toe. Repeated attacks, or flares, can lead to irreparable damage of the affected joint(s) as well as interfere with a person’s quality of life and work productivity, says Dr. Singh, who is also a professor at UAB’s division of clinical immunology and rheumatology.
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