During the recent decade, several studies about prevalence of symptom-based GERD have revealed increase of its prevalence. In addition to the highly disturbing typical symptoms, it has a series of known consequences and may affect the quality of life.
To determine the prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) as well as their main characteristics and risk factors among the population of Arar City, Northern Saudi Arabia.
A cross-sectional study was carried out on a sample of 302 individuals from population of Arar city from October 01, 2016 to May 30, 2017, using a researcher made questionnaire and checklist. The questionnaire was administrated in online method. Data were analyzed by SPSS version 22, using descriptive statistics and Chi- Square test.
Total prevalence of GERD among the studied respondents was 61.8%. In 11.8% there was severe pain. Further, 61.8% reported loss of appetite as an associated condition, 57% reported nausea and vomiting, 55.9% indigestion, 55.4% food regurgitation, 41.4% chest pain and 35.5% headache. The main found risk factors were fatty meals in 84.9% followed by coffee drinking in 77.4%, stress in 71%, spicy food in 58.1% NSAD in 24.7% and smoking in 17.2%. There were no significant effect of sex, age, educational level, marital status or occupational status in the occurrence of GERD (p>0.05).
This is the first population-based study in Arar, Northern Saudi Arabia, reporting prevalence of GERD. The rate of 61.8% was substantially high. Coffee drinking, stress, spicy food, prolonged use of NSAID, fatty meals and smoking were the reported risk factors. Population-based endoscopic studies are recommended.