No link between acid reflux and survival

Jan 04, 2008

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), often known as acid reflux, is a common problem that has been associated with cancers, asthma, recurrent aspiration and pulmonary fibrosis. A new study published in The American Journal of Gastroenterology examines whether GERD sufferers may have shorter lifespans than those without the disease.

Drawing on over 50,000 person-years of data, the study provides reassuring evidence that people with acid reflux symptoms do not have an increased risk of death, finding no difference in survival rates between sufferers and non-sufferers.

In fact, the study finds that people with infrequent acid reflux may actually have better survival rates than those with either daily symptoms, or none at all. “It may be that occasional reflux symptoms are a reflection of potential protective behaviors that are associated with reflux, such as regular exercise or modest amounts of alcohol ingestion,” suggest Nicholas J. Talley and G. Richard Locke, III, co-authors of the study.

The study adds perspective to the risk of acid reflux symptoms. While there are a large number of acid reflux sufferers in the U.S., incidences of related cancer are extremely rare. “Although extraesophageal manifestations occur in some people with reflux disease, our results suggest that this disease is a benign condition in the vast majority of sufferers,” say the authors.


Source: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Explore further: The Ebola outbreak highlights shortcomings in disease surveillance and response – and where we can do better

Related Stories

Acid reflux without symptoms does not worsen asthma

Apr 08, 2009

A commonly used treatment for acid reflux does not improve asthma symptoms or control in patients who do not have symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux (GER), according to a new study supported by the National Heart, Lung, ...

Natural history of heartburn

Feb 07, 2011

A research team from Iceland studied the natural history and prevalence of heartburn at a 10-year interval, and the effect of heartburn on various symptoms and activities. The results showed that heartburn is a common and ...

Recommended for you

Aspirin to improve leg ulcers

1 hour ago

Researchers are looking at whether aspirin can improve the healing rates of leg ulcers in older adults.

Sierra Leone marks grim Ebola anniversary

5 hours ago

On May 24 last year a pregnant woman and an older housewife staggered into Kenema hospital in eastern Sierra Leone and were diagnosed within a day as the country's first Ebola cases.

MSF fighting cholera outbreak in Tanzania refugee camps

May 24, 2015

Medical charity Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF, Doctors Without Borders) said Sunday it had launched emergency treatment centres in Tanzania, where thousands of Burundians fleeing unrest have been hit by cholera.

Bacteria blamed in indigenous Mexican baby deaths

May 23, 2015

Bacteria—and not a contaminated vaccine as initially suspected—were to blame for the recent deaths of two Mexican babies and for sickening 29 others, according to an official investigation.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.