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Visit GP before stopping gout medication

Media Release

30 August 2013

Arthritis New Zealand urges visit to GP before stopping gout medication

Arthritis New Zealand strongly urges people with Gout, which is a form of arthritis, not to discontinue taking their medication, for gout, without first consulting health professionals, in response to today’s New Zealand Herald article on ‘gout drug seen as dangerous loophole’.

The drug referred to in this article ‘benzbromarone’ has been through an extensive approval process and reviewed by PHARMAC before being approved for funding. This drug can only be prescribed by a specialist who will have taken all the patients risk factors into consideration.

Like all medicines there are potential side effects, that will be discussed with patients and a positive Doctor/patient communication is vital.

“But the message that needs to be communicated to New Zealanders using these gout medications is to not discontinue them without consulting health professionals first.” Arthritis New Zealand Chief Executive, Sandra Kirby said.

Gout can be excruciatingly painful; and pain-relief medication is an important part of a well-balanced self-management programme. Other elements of such programmes include exercise, support and a healthy diet.

ends

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