Risk Factors for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease in Saudi Arabia

Ali Mesfer Alkhathami, Abdulrahman Ahmad Alzahrani, Mohammed Abdullah Alzhrani, Obaidallah Buraykan Alsuwat, Mohammad Eid Mahmoud Mahfouz


Background: Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is one of the most prevalent gastrointestinal tract diseases worldwide. GERD has an effect on the patients quality of life as well as the health care system that can be prevented by identifying its risk factors among the population. Hence, we applied this study to assess the GERDs risk factors in Saudi Arabia.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was designed to assess the GERDs risk factors among the community of Saudi Arabia. The sample was collected randomly during the period from November to December 2016. Through a self-administered validated GERD questionnaire (GerdQ), GERD was diagnosed. Then, the GERDs risk factors were assessed among all participants. The data were analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences version 21.0; the Students t-test was used to assess the association of GERD and risk factors.

Results: A total of 2,043 subjects participated in the study. The characteristics and behaviors of participants statistically significant with GERD were positive family history (39.3%), obese (body mass index > 30 kg/m2) (39.4%), not performing weekly regular physical activities >= 30 min (31.1%) and smoking (39.3%). GERD was commonly noticed in participants on analgesics (38.4%), not taking fibers (37.4%), drinking tea (33.4%), eating greasy (31.2%) and fast food (32.7%), and these were statistically significant with GERD (P <= 0.05).

Conclusion: The characteristics and behaviors associated with GERD in Saudi population are family history of GERD, obesity, sedentary lifestyle and smoking. Other common risk factors correlated with GERD are analgesics intake, no fibers intake, drinking tea, greasy and fast food intake.

Gastroenterol Res. 2017;10(5):294-300
doi: https://doi.org/10.14740/gr906w


GERD; Reflux; Risk factors; Saudi Arabia

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