Gout is common worldwide.  To achieve best control of gout (which should be curable using drugs such as allopurinol to lower uric acid concentrations in the blood) patients and doctors need to know what target level of uric acid in the blood to aim for with treatment to achieve this cure

Most patients with gout understand the basics of their condition, but only a minority recognizes the importance of achieving and maintaining their serum uric acid (SU) goals, according to an article accepted for publication in Arthritis and Rheumatism journal this month

Investigators in the USA asked six gout-specific questions of 612 U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs patients who were prescribed allopurinol in the past year. Only 14% of respondents knew their SU goal, a surprisingly low figure according to the researchers.  Doctors who treat gout should give better education and guidance and involve patients in understanding their treatment goals.  Evidence suggests when uric acid levels are lowered to less than 300 micro/l cure will follow in due course.  Patients be aware!