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[This article belongs to Volume - 26, Issue - 01]

Exploring the Burden and Determinants of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease among Adults in the United Arab Emirates: A Cross-sectional Study

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a chronic gastrointestinal disease characterized by regurgitation of gastric contents into the esophagus. Over the past ten years, there has been a rise in the number of individuals in the UAE experiencing chronic gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). This study aimed to assess the prevalence and factors of GERD among adults in the UAE. The study followed a cross-sectional study design. We included samples from individuals over 18 years old attending the Medi city in Ajman. The research collected data via a self-administered questionnaire. The GERDQ was utilized to assess the prevalence of GERD. Questions regarding the socio-demographic characteristics, lifestyle patterns, and other factors were included in the study. Chi-Square test was used to evaluate the statistical significance of various factors, and binomial and multiple regression analysis was used to determine the factors (p-value < 0.05). The prevalence of GERD was found to be 13.5%, which is significantly higher (19.2%, p=0.019) among adults above 30 years of age. The risk factors identified were age (OR= 3.1, CI: 1.18 - 8.2), less sleep (OR=2.4, CI: 1.2-4.5), those who have arthritis (OR= 5.2, CI: 2.1-13.2) and depression (OR= 2.1, CI: 1.06-4.1). Those who exercise frequently were found to be a protective factor (OR= 0.48, CI: 0.25-0.92). GERD is prevalent among the adult population above 30 years. Improving lifestyle habits would prevent the likelihood of the symptoms of GERD.