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Cent Eur J Public Health. 2000 May;8(2):101-3.

Thickening of the roentgenometrical gastric fold in the elderly: relation to peptic ulcer incidence.

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  • 1Department of Hygiene and Preventive Medicine, School of Medicine, Yamagata University, Japan.


Radiographic upper gastrointestinal barium examination is commonly used to diagnose peptic ulcer. However, little attention has been paid to its thickening, except in Ménétrier disease and gastric carcinoma of Borrman type IV. The present study was undertaken to investigate the relation of age to roentgenometrical gastric fold width and history of peptic ulcer. The subjects were 724 men (35-64 years old) who participated in a periodic medical health examination and underwent radiographic upper gastrointestinal barium examination. The gastric fold width of the anterior wall in the body was evaluated by air-contrast examination and expressed in millimeters. In the group with a history of peptic ulcer, the roentgenometrical gastric fold was significantly thicker than that in the group without it. The fold width was significantly greater in the elderly group (55-64 years old) than in the young (35-44 years old) and middle-aged (45-54 years old) groups. The fold width tended to increase with age in persons with peptic ulcer history, but not in those without it. When the subjects were divided into three groups by gastric fold width, the incidence of peptic ulcer was significantly higher in the upper third group compared with the lower third group. This relationship between the gastric fold width and the incidence of peptic ulcer tends to become stronger with aging. In the heavy smoker group (> or = 10 of cigarettes per day), the gastric fold width was significantly thicker than that of non-smokers or those who smoked less. This relationship also tended to grow stronger with aging. The mean incidence of peptic ulcers was significantly higher among the heavy smokers. However, daily alcohol drinkers did not show any significant difference in gastric fold width from the other subjects. The gastric fold seems to be thicker in persons with peptic ulcer history, and the incidence of peptic ulcer is higher in persons with thicker gastric fold. These relationships tend to grow stronger with aging.a

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