Prevalence and Clinical Characteristics of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease in Human Immunodeficiency Virus–Infected Adults Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Background Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is common in the general population, but its burden is unknown in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–infected adults. The primary objective of the study was to determine the prevalence and clinical characteristics of GERD in HIV-infected adults. Methods We conducted a cross-sectional study of 85 HIV-infected adults from 2 HIV clinics in Canada. The patients completed a validated GERD questionnaire during their scheduled clinic visits. Results Eighty-five HIV-infected adults were included in the analysis. Mean age, median body mass index, and median waist circumference were 44 years, 25 cm, and 93 cm, respectively. Sixty-eight patients (81%) had GERD, and 52 (77%) of them were male. Of the 68 adults with GERD, 36 (52.9%) were classified as frequent, and 42 (61.8%) were classified as moderate-severe. Twenty-two patients had metabolic syndrome, of whom 19 (86.4%) had GERD symptoms. The weight of patients with GERD was higher than that in patients without GERD (75 [interquartile range, 19.5] and 63.35 [interquartile range, 19.8] kg, respectively; P = 0.04). Sixty-five patients (95.6%) who had GERD symptoms were taking medications to treat it. Most patients (92.3%) were on histamine-2 receptor antagonists. Conclusions Gastroesophageal reflux disease is prevalent among HIV-infected adults, and more than half of the patients present with symptoms described as frequent and/or moderate-severe in intensity. The screening and management of GERD are important considerations as part of routine HIV care.


  • Bader, Mazen
  • Dow, Gordon
  • Yi, Yanqing
  • Howley, Constance
  • Mugford, Gerry
  • Kelly, Deborah

publication date

  • January 2017