Background: Metabolic syndrome (MetS) and hyperuricemia are important risk factors for cardiovascular disease. However, findings regarding the relationship between serum uric acid (UA) level and components of MetS have been inconsistent. This study was performed to explore the potential value of UA level as a marker of MetS among male and female Chinese of different ages. Methods: A total of 5896 subjects (2960 females and 2936 males) were recruited from the Department of Health Management at the Chang Gung Medical Center. Hyperuricemia was defined as a serum UA value >7.0mg/dL for males or >6.0mg/dL for females. MetS was defined according to the criteria of the Adult Treatment Panel III, as modified for Chinese subjects. Serum UA was used to differentiate MetS and to calculate epidemiological indices by means of discriminate analysis and logistic regression. Results: The sensitivity and specificity of serum UA concentration as a marker of MetS ranged from 55.2% to 61.4% and 61.9% to 68.4%, respectively. Subjects with high UA had a higher risk of MetS, with odds ratios ranging from 1.23 to 1.82 (P < 0.01). A positive correlation between serum UA and MetS was observed in both sexes. Serum UA and the occurrence of MetS rose with increasing age in females; in males, however, UA values did not vary with age. Conclusions: Serum UA is more closely associated with MetS in females than in males. High UA among middle-aged women may predict the development of MetS.
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