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J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2007 Sep;22(9):1419-22.

Epidemiology of gastroesophageal reflux disease in Tehran, Iran.

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Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Taleghani Hospital, Shaheed Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.



Epidemiological studies have indicated an increase in the prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease in Western countries; however, there is a lack of information about its prevalence in Iran. The aim of this study was to measure gastroesophageal reflux disease prevalence in a representative sample of the Tehran population in 1999.


In a cross-sectional study, 700 people, with a male : female ratio of 1:1, were selected by stratified randomization based on the probability of 20% prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease and 3% error. They were divided equally into seven age groups. Heartburn and acid regurgitation were considered as the most common symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease. The severity and frequency of heartburn and the role of personal habits in the appearance of this symptom were determined. The prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease in samples was measured, and its actual prevalence in society was estimated.


Of 700 people, 350 were male and 350 were female. The major symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease were observed in 278 (39.7%) people. The prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease of smokers was twice that of non-smokers.


Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a serious and unresolved problem in Western countries, and its increasing prevalence correlates with an increasing prevalence of adenocarcinoma of distal esophagus. The prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease appears to be increasing in Iran also; therefore, it is recommended that major attention be paid to this disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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