Lifestyle Factors and Symptoms of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease: A Cross-sectional Study
Keywords:Lifestyle Factors, Gastro-Esophagus Reflux Disease, Population-Based Study
Background and Objectives: Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) is a condition characterized by heartburn and acid regurgitation without signs of oesophagal mucosal injury on one hand, and erosive oesophagitis and Barrett's oesophagus consequences like oesophagal cancer on the other. The aim of this study was to explore the involvement of different lifestyle-related factors in the aetiology of symptomatic GERD.
Methods: In this cross-sectional study, 79 patients (28 men and 51 women) aged between 20-68 years old were recruited randomly through a direct interview between January to October 2021, and they were prescribed Proton Pump Inhibitors. Prior to starting this study, the approvals had been granted by the ethics committee and oral consent was gained from the participants. A questionnaire was designed and consisted of demographic and clinical characteristics regarding GERD. Statistical analysis was done using SPSS version 25 for describing frequencies and percentages, followed by Chi-square and Fisher’s Exact tests as inferential statistical analysis for finding associations between variables.
Results: Among the total of 79 patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease, the findings indicated that more than half of the study sample (58.2%) were overweight and obese (26.6% and 31.6% respectively), and the heavy smokers made the highest percentage among smokers (19%). There was a statistically significant association between gender and smoking and BMI among GERD patients (P-value = 0.001 and < 0.001 respectively). There was a very highly significant association between BMI and heartburn and nausea and vomiting (P-value = 0.001 for both), while there was a non-significant association between BMI and chest pain, cough, and sleep pattern disturbance (P-value = 0.324, 0.558, and 0.907 respectively).
Conclusion: A higher BMI and smoking are associated with a higher likelihood of GERD symptoms.
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