Background/aims: Patients with type II diabetes mellitus (DM) were known to have higher prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Recent studies have shown that neuropathy has positive role on the development of GERD in type II DM, although its pathogenesis has not been fully understood yet. The aim of this study was to investigate whether neuropathy really contribute to the development of GERD and typical GERD symptoms in patients with type II DM in Korea.
Methods: One hundred and nineteen patients with type II DM who had given informed consents were enrolled. All patients underwent electromyography to check the presence of peripheral neuropathy, face-to-face interview to evaluate their typical GERD symptoms and esophagogastroduodenoscopy to look for the presence of erosive esophagitis. Ninety-five patients were finally included for this study and they were divided according to the presence or absence of the peripheral neuropathy.
Results: The mean age of 95 patients was 59.3 ± 9.1 years and the mean disease duration of DM was 9.3 ± 5.9 years. Typical GERD symptoms were similarly found in both groups with and without peripheral neuropathy (23.6% vs 22.8%, P = 0.921). Erosive esophagitis was more prevalent in patients with neuropathy than in those without neuropathy (31.5% vs 10.5%, P = 0.022).
Conclusions: In patients with type II DM, peripheral neuropathy is an independent risk factor for the erosive esophagitis. However, peripheral neuropathy did not contribute to the presence of the typical GERD symptoms.
Keywords: Diabetes mellitus, Type 2; Erosive esophagitis; Gastroesophageal reflux disease; Neuropathy.