Quality of life in acute and maintenance treatment of non-erosive and mild erosive gastro-oesophageal reflux disease

F. Pace, C. Negrini, I. Wiklund, C. Rossi, V. Savarino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Quality of life has been assessed in a large, multicentre randomized, open label study. Aim: To evaluate the economic and clinical consequences of two different maintenance treatment modalities, administered to 6017 gastro-oesophageal reflux disease patients at 451 gastroenterological centres in Italy. Methods: Adult gastro-oesophageal reflux disease patients received, at enrolment, an acute treatment of esomeprazole 40 mg/day for 4 weeks and, if successfully treated, were randomized into two maintenance treatment strategies: esomeprazole 20 mg/day or esomeprazole on demand for 6 months. A baseline endoscopy allowed the exclusion of grade II-IV oesophagitis according to Savary-Miller's classification. Burden of gastro-oesophageal reflux disease was measured at baseline by the generic questionnaire Short-Form 36 and by a disease specific instrument, quality of life in reflux and dyspepsia (QOLRAD), also administered at start and conclusion of maintenance period. Investigators were required to collect patient judgement about the degree of satisfaction with treatment effect on heartburn, with a 7-point scale. Results: A comparison between Short-Form 36 scores and the normative source of the Italian general population suggested that symptomatic gastro-oesophageal reflux disease patients experience a worse quality of life than the general population. At the end of the 4-week treatment with esomeprazole 40 mg all (QOLRAD) dimensions showed a statistically significant (P <0.0001) and clinically meaningful improvement. Satisfaction level towards treatment was reported high in the total enrolled population after acute treatment with esomeprazole 40 mg/day (96.2% satisfied and 64.4% very satisfied). A statistically significant difference in (QOLRAD) scores was registered at the end of maintenance phase in favour of the continuous regimen, nevertheless the size of this difference was very small in all dimensions; similarly, the proportion of patients very satisfied was slightly higher in the continuous treatment arm (64.5%) than in the on-demand arm (59.7%). Conclusions: Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease can significantly impair health-related quality of life and esomeprazole therapy allows immediate relief in the acute phase of the disease. Quality of life improvement was maintained during the 6-month follow-up with a slight difference in term of quality of life in reflux and dyspepsia scores and patients' satisfaction in favour of the continuous treatment strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)349-356
Number of pages8
JournalAlimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 15 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)

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