An abnormally high level of uric acid in the blood. Hyperuricaemia may lead to gout due to the deposition of uric acid crystals in the joints; it may also cause kidney stones (see calculus, urinary tract) and tophus. Hyperuricaemia may be caused by an inborn error of metabolism (see metabolism, inborn errors of), by the rapid destruction of cells in a disease such as leukaemia, or by medication that reduces the excretion of uric acid by the kidneys, such as diuretic drugs. Large amounts of purine in the diet may also cause hyperuricaemia. Drugs such as allopurinol or sulfinpyrazone are prescribed for the duration of the patient’s life. Purine-rich foods should be avoided.


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