, Volume 46, Issue 4, pp 448-455
Date: 13 Jan 2011

Risk factors for erosive esophagitis: a cross-sectional study of a large number of Japanese males

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The impact of obesity on gastroesophageal reflux disease remains controversial. We undertook this study, with a large sample size, to investigate risk factors for endoscopic erosive esophagitis by multivariate analysis, including visceral adipose tissue (VAT) and subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) as covariates.


Japanese males who visited our institute for a comprehensive medical survey between 2007 and 2010 were enrolled. All subjects voluntarily participated in a self-paid health check-up program including blood test screening, physical examinations, and esophagogastroduodenoscopy. VAT and SAT were measured by computed tomography at the navel level. Independent and significant predictors of erosive esophagitis were determined by multivariate analysis.


Of 9840 eligible subjects, 1831 (18.6%) were diagnosed with erosive esophagitis. Body mass index and triglyceride were predictors of an increased prevalence of erosive esophagitis (odds ratios [ORs] = 1.063 and 1.001; 95% confidence intervals [CIs] = 1.020–1.108 and 1.001–1.002; p = 0.004 and <0.001, respectively). Heavy alcohol consumption, heavy smoking, and hiatal hernia were also associated with an increased prevalence of erosive esophagitis (ORs = 1.276, 1.399, and 2.758; 95% CIs = 1.085–1.501, 1.220–1.605, and 2.474–3.075; p < 0.001 for all). Helicobacter pylori infection significantly and independently decreased the prevalence of erosive esophagitis (OR = 0.346, 95% CI = 0.299–0.401, p < 0.001). Central obesity, as determined by VAT and waist girth, did not confer an increased risk of erosive esophagitis after adjusting for confounders.


Lifestyle factors including heavy alcohol consumption, heavy smoking, metabolic disorders, and hiatal hernia increased the risk of erosive esophagitis, but central obesity did not.