Objective: Limited information is available on predictors of the response to proton pump inhibitor (PPI) treatment in patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Endoscopic grading of gastroesophageal flap valve (GEFV) is simple and reproducible, and can provide useful information on patients with suspected reflux undergoing an endoscopy. The aim of this study was to prospectively identify predictors, including endoscopic findings such as GEFV, for PPI treatment outcomes in patients with GERD.
Material and methods: One hundred and fifty consecutive patients with GERD were enrolled. All patients were treated with pantoprazole 40 mg daily for 8 weeks. Treatment response was defined as greater than 50% reduction in symptom scores between the two symptom assessments (i.e., over 4 or 8 weeks). Univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses between responders and non-responders were performed to identify variables predicting response to pantoprazole treatment.
Results: Of the 150 consecutive patients considered for this study, 31 were excluded based on exclusion criteria and/or refusal to participate, leaving 119 eligible patients. After 4-week pantoprazole treatment, 70 of 119 (58.8%) patients were classified as responders. Patients with obesity and Helicobacter pylori infection demonstrated a higher response rate to 4-week pantoprazole treatment (odds ratio (OR) 5.28, p = 0.008; OR 3.76, p = 0.023, respectively). Patients with abnormal GEFV showed a lower response rate to 4-week treatment (OR 0.17, p = 0.016). After 8-week treatment, 86 of 119 (72.3%) patients were classified as responders. Abnormal GEFV and aspirin intake were associated with a lower response rate to 8-week treatment (OR 0.17, p = 0.021; OR 0.11, p = 0.020, respectively).
Conclusions: Abnormal GEFV was a significant independent factor predicting poor response to both 4-week and 8-week pantoprazole treatment. Endoscopic grading of GEFV provides useful information for predicting the response to PPI treatment in patients with GERD.