Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 26, Supplement 7, pp S90–S96 | Cite as

Upper gastrointestinal bleeding

Nature and magnitude of the problem in the U.S.
  • Jeffrey A. Cutler
  • Albert I. Mendeloff
Part 5: Epidemiology, Cost Effectiveness, Future Studies


This study examines the frequency of upper GI bleeding in the United States population, and the use of diagnostic endoscopy in its evaluation. Data from the National Hospital Discharge Survey and National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey are used, as well as limited data from the Veteran's Administration and State of Wisconsin. There were almost 1.1 million discharges from U.S. hospitals in 1978 with diagnoses related to UGI bleeding. Using an indirect method of estimation based on cases of peptic ulcer specified as bleeding, we estimate the rate of hospitalization with UGI bleeding as 150 per 100,000 population per year. About one-sixth of these patients underwent gastroscopy and/or esophagoscopy in 1978, approximately a three-fold increase over five years previously. National mortality from UGI bleeding decreased approximately 40 percent between 1968 and 1977, but data are inadequate to infer a relationship to increased use of endoscopy. Suggestions for further research are specified.


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Copyright information

© Digestive Disease Systems. Inc 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeffrey A. Cutler
    • 1
  • Albert I. Mendeloff
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Epidemiology and Field Studies BranchNational Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism and Digestive DiseasesBethesdaUSA
  2. 2.the Department of MedicineSinai Hospital of BaltimoreUSA
  3. 3.the Division of Gastroenterology, Department of MedicineJohns Hopkins University School of MedicineUSA

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