Prevalence and risk factors of asymptomatic peptic ulcer disease in Taiwan

World J Gastroenterol. 2011 Mar 7;17(9):1199-203. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v17.i9.1199.


Aim: To investigate the prevalence and risk factors of asymptomatic peptic ulcer disease (PUD) in a general Taiwanese population.

Methods: From January to August 2008, consecutive asymptomatic subjects undergoing a routine health check-up were evaluated by upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. Gastroduodenal mucosal breaks were carefully assessed, and a complete medical history and demographic data were obtained from each patient. Logistic regression analysis was conducted to identify independent risk factors for asymptomatic PUD.

Results: Of the 572 asymptomatic subjects, 54 (9.4%) were diagnosed as having PUD. The prevalence of gastric ulcer, duodenal ulcer and both gastric and duodenal ulcers were 4.7%, 3.9%, and 0.9%, respectively. Multivariate analysis revealed that prior history of PUD [odds ratio (OR), 2.0, 95% CI: 1.3-2.9], high body mass index [body mass index (BMI) 25-30: OR, 1.5, 95% CI: 1.0-2.2; BMI > 30 kg/m(2): OR, 3.6, 95% CI: 1.5-8.7] and current smoker (OR, 2.6, 95% CI: 1.6-4.4) were independent predictors of asymptomatic PUD. In contrast, high education level was a negative predictor of PUD (years of education 10-12: OR, 0.5, 95% CI: 0.3-0.8; years of education > 12: OR, 0.6, 95% CI: 0.3-0.9).

Conclusion: The prevalence of PUD in asymptomatic subjects is 9.4% in Taiwan. Prior history of PUD, low education level, a high BMI and current smoker are independent risk factors for developing asymptomatic PUD.

Keywords: Asymptomatic; Endoscopy; Health check-up; Peptic ulcer disease.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Educational Status
  • Endoscopy, Digestive System
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Peptic Ulcer / diagnosis*
  • Peptic Ulcer / epidemiology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Social Class
  • Taiwan / epidemiology
  • Young Adult