Background: There have been many reports about the relationship between reflux oesophagitis and obesity, but not the metabolic syndrome.
Aim: To review upper gastrointestinal endoscopic findings and screening data obtained in healthy subjects, and assess relations between reflux oesophagitis and features of the metabolic syndrome.
Methods: In 3599 men and 1560 women, the prevalence of reflux oesophagitis was assessed in relation to the age, body mass index, blood pressure, triglycerides and fasting blood glucose. Logistic regression analysis was used to calculate odds ratio for risk factors.
Results: The overall prevalence of reflux oesophagitis was 4%, and it increased with age in women. Prevalence of reflux oesophagitis increased significantly with an increase of body mass index, blood pressure, triglycerides and fasting blood glucose. On multivariate analysis, male sex (odds ratio: 2.5; 95% confidence interval: 1.6-3.8), obesity (1.9; 1.4-2.5), hyperglycaemia (1.7; 1.2-2.4) and hypertension (1.5; 1.1-2.1) were independent risk factors for reflux oesophagitis. Among both men and women, those with reflux oesophagitis were significantly more likely to have two or more of these risk factors than non-reflux oesophagitis subjects.
Conclusions: Components of the metabolic syndrome are associated with the occurrence of reflux oesophagitis. Therefore, some risk factors may be common to reflux oesophagitis and the metabolic syndrome.