Dyspepsia in general practice in Denmark. A 1-year analysis of consulters in general practice

Scand J Prim Health Care. 1998 Dec;16(4):216-21. doi: 10.1080/028134398750002981.


Objective: To estimate the incidence rate of patients with dyspepsia in general practice, related to age, gender and dwelling and to classify the patients into dyspepsia subgroups.

Design: In a background population of 123,610 persons under the National Health Insurance System a systematic, prospective registration of dyspepsia patients consulting in general practice was done. Each patient was subject to a structured interview covering 18 dyspepsia symptoms and six alarm symptoms. A diagnostic chart was used to classify the patients into subgroups.

Setting: General practice: 93 general practitioners in 63 centres in Denmark.

Patients: Patients consulting the general practitioner with dyspepsia as their main complaint.

Results: 4215 dyspepsia patients were registered within 1 year. The annual incidence rate of dyspepsia was 3.4%. Alarm symptoms were present in 11.7% of the patients. The highest incidence rates were related to middle age, female gender and rural dwelling. Of these 34% had dysmotility-like, 30% had reflux-like, 17% ulcer-like and 3% uncharacteristic dyspepsia, while 16% were classified into two or more groups. Dysmotility-like dyspepsia was predominant in women and reflux-like dyspepsia was predominant in men.

Conclusions: Within 1 year 34 patients out of 1000 will seek medical advise in general practice with a new episode of dyspepsia. Based on the registration of symptoms 28 of 34 can be classified into a single subgroup of dyspepsia; 4 of 34 patients will present with one or more alarm symptom.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Denmark / epidemiology
  • Dyspepsia* / classification
  • Dyspepsia* / diagnosis
  • Dyspepsia* / epidemiology
  • Dyspepsia* / therapy
  • Family Practice / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Housing / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care / statistics & numerical data*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Referral and Consultation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Registries
  • Sex Distribution