Allergic rhinitis doubles the risk of developing GERD

  • Kung YM & al.
  • Sci Rep
  • 29 Oct 2019

  • International Clinical Digest
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Takeaway

  • A nationwide retrospective cohort finds that allergic rhinitis (AR) nearly doubles the odds of developing gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), regardless of the presence of asthma.

Why this matters

  • The prevalence of GERD is increasing worldwide.
  • It has long been established that asthma increases the risk for GERD.
  • The association between AR and GERD may arise from increased frequency of swallowing in AR, which increases the frequency of transient lower-esophageal sphincter relaxations.

Study design

  • Retrospective cohort of patients with AR (n=96,905) compared with non-AR patients (n=96,905), both groups without a history of GERD, in a subset of Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database.
  • Results were adjusted for age, sex, and comorbidities.
  • Funding: Ministry of Science and Technology, Republic of China; Kaohsiung Municipal Hsiao-Kang Hospital; other.

Key results

  • The AR group had nearly double the odds of developing GERD vs the non-AR group (adjusted HR [aHR], 1.94; P<.001>
  • Both groups did not have asthma.
  • Results did not differ by age subgroups.
  • The AR group with asthma as a comorbidity had similar odds of developing GERD vs the non-AR group (aHR, 1.98; P<.001>

    Limitations

    • Reliance on health insurance claims.
    • No adjustment for lifestyle, smoking, and alcohol consumption.
    • Observational design.