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Arq Gastroenterol. 2003 Jan-Mar;40(1):31-4. Epub 2003 Oct 6.

[Prevalence of heartburn in Pelotas, RS, Brasil: population-based study].

[Article in Portuguese]

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Departamento de Clínica Médica, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade Federal de Pelotas, Belo Horizonte, MG. Brasil.



Estimation of the prevalence of heartburn in an adult population of Pelotas, RS, Brazil, once there is no national study done with adequate and specific statistic analysis.


Cross-sectional study in populational base.


Were included citizen over 20 years in samples obtained in 40 populational areas according to Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics. An uniform and precodified questionnaire was applied to all participants. A quality control was done using a simplified questionnaire in 10% of the people that were included in the sample. Codification and the input of the data was done two times through the Epi-Info programme in order to minimize the consistency errors. The analysis of the figures was done in the SPSS programme and obtained comparations between the prevalence of heartburn in relation to demographic variables through the prevalence rate, confidence interval of 95% and the 'x - square test. Also were analysed the figures of heartburn associated to meals and decubit position.


Among 1,263 persons included in the study were found rates of the heartburn prevalence of 48.2%, 32.2% and 18.2% in the last year, month and week, respectively. All forms of heartburn were associated to females with statistic significance. There was no association with age. The prevalence of heartburn associated with meals and decubit position in the last year was 33% and 16.6%, respectively. These association in the last month was 23% and 11.4% and in the last week was 14.3% and 7.2%, respectively.


The high prevalence found in this study should call attention to those persons which could be exposed to the risk of complications, as well as to those that have alterations in the life quality.

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