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February 20, 1967

Diagnostic Value of the Colchicine Therapeutic Trial

Author Affiliations

From the departments of medicine, Jewish Hospital of Brooklyn, Kings County Hospital, and State University of New York Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn.

JAMA. 1967;199(8):525-528. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03120080059008

The reliability of the colchicine therapeutic trial as a diagnostic tool in differentiating acute gout from other forms of arthritis was tested in this study. Rigid criteria for improvement as a result of colchicine therapy were established: (1) major subsidence of objective joint inflammatory changes within 48 hours of colchicine therapy, and (2) no recrudescence of inflammatory joint manifestations within seven days. Approximately 75% (44 of 58) of patients with acute gout responded in this manner; three of 62 (5%) patients with other arthritic disorders also responded. It is concluded that the colchicine therapeutic trial is a useful, but not infallible, diagnostic aid.