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J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2001 Apr;16(4):373-6.

Prevalence of endoscopic reflux esophagitis among Koreans.

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1
Institute of Digestive Disease and Nutrition, Department of Internal Medicine, Medical College of Korea University, Seoul.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND AIM:

Although reflux esophagitis is believed to be common in the Western population, very few epidemiologic data on reflux esophagitis in Koreans are available. The aims of this study were to evaluate the prevalence of endoscopic reflux esophagitis in patients who came for a physical check-up at Korea University Hospital, and to study the relationship between various factors relevant to reflux disease.

METHODS:

This study was carried out prospectively on 7,015 patients who received an esophagogastroduodenoscopy from September 1996 to December 1997. Most of the patients were free of symptoms and had come for their self-paid check-up.

RESULTS:

The overall prevalence of reflux esophagitis was 3.4%, and most of the patients had a mild degree of esophagitis representing grade 1 in 98.3% and grade 2 in 1.7%. The male: female ratio for esophagitis was 7 : 1, and the body mass index (BMI) was significantly higher in patients with reflux esophagitis. A hiatal hernia was found in 166 patients with esophagitis (68.6%), but only in 9.2% patients without esophagitis (P < 0.05). Smoking and alcohol consumption were associated with the development of reflux esophagitis (P < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

The prevalence of endoscopic reflux esophagitis among Koreans is 3.4%, and most of the patients had a mild grade esophagitis. Smoking, alcohol consumption, the presence of a hiatal hernia and a higher BMI are associated with the development of reflux esophagitis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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