Gold compounds are of two types:
1. Those used for intramuscularly such as gold sodium thiomalate and aurothioglucose. They are made up of about 50% elemental gold.
2. Those used in oral formulation such as auranofin containing 26-29% elemental gold.
Mechanism of action:
It is thought that these gold compounds are taken up by macrophages and thus suppresses the phagocytosis and lysosomal enzyme activity.
This process is responsible for the reduction of bone and articular destruction.
They tend to accumulate in the synovial fluid and bone marrow. 1/3 of the gold compounds are excreted in the urine and remaining goes through feces.
Pruritic (itching) skin rashes may occur.