Original Paper

Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 51, Issue 5, pp 858-863

First online:

Presenting Symptoms of Nonerosive and Erosive Esophagitis in Pediatric Patients

  • Sandeep K. GuptaAffiliated withRiley Hospital for Children Email author 
  • , Eric HassallAffiliated withBritish Columbia Children's Hospital, University of British Columbia
  • , Yi-Lin ChiuAffiliated withAbbott Laboratories
  • , Fouad AmerAffiliated withTAP Pharmaceutical Products Inc.
  • , Melvin B. HeymanAffiliated withUCSF Children's Hospital, University of California, San Francisco

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Children and adolescents with symptomatic gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and erosive esophagitis (EE) of grade ≥2 (n=45) or nonerosive esophagitis (NEE) (n=45) were assessed to determine the relationship between presenting symptoms, esophagitis severity, and patient age. Overall, regurgitation/vomiting, abdominal pain, and cough were the most frequent symptoms. The prevalence and severity of anorexia/feed refusal was significantly greater in EE versus NEE children; this symptom was also significantly more prevalent in younger (1–5 years) children (both NEE and EE groups) compared to older children. Cough was significantly less severe in NEE adolescents than in younger children. Cough, anorexia/feed refusal, and regurgitation/vomiting were more severe and heartburn was less severe in EE children aged 1–5 years compared with older patients. In conclusion, GERD in children manifests differently than that in adults and symptoms vary with patient age. Symptoms were not predictive of presence or lack of mucosal damage.


Children Adolescents Gastroesophageal reflux disease Nonerosive reflux disease Erosive esophagitis Feeding problems Cough Abdominal pain