Factors Associated to Abnormal Distal Esophageal Exposure to Acid and Esophagitis in Individuals Seeking Bariatric Surgery.


Division of Bariatric and Gastrointestinal Surgery, Department of Surgery, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1200 E. Broad Street, Richmond, VA; Postgraduate Program in Medicine: Surgical Sciences, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, 2400 Ramiro Barcelos Street, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil. Electronic address: [Email]


BACKGROUND : Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) impacts choice and outcomes of bariatric surgery. However, GERD diagnosis based solely on symptoms yields inaccurate results.
OBJECTIVE : To determine the factors associated with a positive 24h pH-monitoring (pH-test) or esophagitis in patients with severe obesity seeking bariatric surgery.
METHODS : Private practice.
METHODS : 93 patients with severe obesity underwent prospective evaluation for GERD symptoms, body composition, upper gastrointestinal endoscopy, esophageal manometry and pH-test. Correlation analyses were performed.
RESULTS : 50 patients (53.8%) had GERD symptoms, 49 (52.7%) had esophagitis and 33 (35.5%) had a positive pH-test. Among patients with GERD symptoms, 18% had normal pH-test and no esophagitis, while 34.9% of patients without GERD symptoms had positive pH-test, esophagitis or both. Factors independently associated with positive pH-test were esophagitis (PR:3.08, 95%CI: 1.4-6.9, P = 0.006) and defective lower esophageal sphincter (PR:1.88, 95%CI: 1.09-3.21, P = 0.02). Factors independently associated with esophagitis were hiatal hernia (PR: 2.46; 95%CI: 1.6-3.7, P<0.001), GERD symptoms (PR:2.09; 95%CI: 1.3-3.4, P = 0.003) and positive pH-test (PR:1.82; 95%CI: 1.2-2.7, P = 0.003). The combined presence of GERD symptoms and esophagitis had a low positive predictive value for a positive pH-test (57%). On the other hand, the absence of both GERD symptoms and esophagitis had a 90% predictive value for a negative pH-test.
CONCLUSIONS : Investigation for GERD before bariatric surgery should consist of routine upper endoscopy and GERD symptom evaluation in all patients. Patients with GERD symptoms and no esophagitis may need a pH-test for GERD diagnosis. Prospective studies are needed to understand significance of GERD diagnosis prior to bariatric surgery.


GERD,bariatric surgery,pH monitoring,pH-test,reflux,

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