The prevalence of reflux esophagitis is increasing in Korea. To estimate the prevalence and clinical characteristics of reflux esophagitis in healthy subjects, we retrospectively examined the medical records of healthy subjects undergoing a routine check-up from October 2004 to September 2005. A total of 6,082 (3,590 men, mean age 44±10 yr) subjects were enrolled in this study. The prevalence of reflux esophagitis in healthy subjects was 10.5%. According to the univariate analysis, male sex (odds ratio [OR] 3.49, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.84-4.30), smoking history (OR 1.91, 95% CI 1.60-2.28), body mass index (BMI) >30 kg/m2 (OR 2.13, 95% CI 1.37-3.33), total cholesterol >250 mg/dL (OR 1.50, 95% CI 1.05-2.14), low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol ≥160 mg/dL (OR 1.52, 95% CI 1.08-2.14), triglyceride ≥150 mg/dL (OR 1.92, 95% CI 1.61-2.30), high blood pressure (BP) (OR 1.46, 95% CI 1.20-1.76), and fasting glucose ≥110 mg/dL (OR 1.45, 95% CI 1.13-1.86) were significantly associated with reflux esophagitis (all p<0.05). However, age, alcohol drinking and Helicobacter pylori infection were not associated with reflux esophagitis. In conclusiosn, significant relationships of reflux esophagitis with obesity, low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, high triglyceride, high BP, and elevated fasting glucose suggested that reflux esophagitis might represent the disease spectrum of the metabolic syndrome
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