Aim Gout is a common form of inflammatory arthritis with suboptimal management. Management guidelines for gout highlight the importance of both pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments. Dietitians can potentially assist in improving gout's associated dietary and lifestyle factors, and thereby play a role in improving its management. The aim of this study was to investigate perspectives of Australian community dietitians on whether their role in gout management could be expanded to improve management and treatment of gout. Method A snowballing recruitment strategy was used. Dietitians known to the research team were invited to participate and then they suggested further dietitians. Semi-structured interviews (one-on-one) were conducted with 16 dietitians. The focus was on their experiences of contributing to the management of gout, including any barriers and facilitators experienced. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and independently analyzed by 2 reviewers to identify themes. Results The main reported role of dietitians in gout management was providing patient education. An identified facilitator was dietitians' understanding of gout and its dietary management. Barriers included the emphasis placed on medications for treatment by clinicians and patients, consultation costs, limitations in the evidence for the efficacy of dietary changes and lack of specific training in gout for dietitians. Dietitians predominantly managed the other metabolic conditions commonly associated with gout. Conclusion Currently, the role dietitians play in gout management is limited. However, dietitians have the potential to take on larger roles in gout education and can also indirectly contribute by way of management of commonly associated comorbidities in gout patients.
- patient care