Use of ambulatory oesophageal pH monitoring to diagnose gastrooesophageal reflux disease.

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OBJECTIVES: To investigate the characteristics of patients referred for ambulatory oesophageal pHmetry, the referral pattern, and the role of oesophageal pHmetry as a diagnostic tool in a tertiary care hospital in Sri Lanka. DESIGN: Data obtained from patients referred to the Gastrointestinal Research Laboratory at Teaching Hospital Ragama for 24-hour ambulatory oesophageal pHmetry from 1998 to 2005 were reviewed. Patients' upper gastrointestinal endoscopy reports and stationary oesophageal manometry reports were also reviewed. RESULTS: 140 pHmetry studies were performed during the study period. The majority of patients (> 90%) were referred by specialists in gastroenterology practicing in hospitals in or around Colombo. There were 88 males and the median age was 37 years (range 0.5-74). The median duration of symptoms was 4.1 years (range 0.2 -25). Typical symptoms of gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) were present in 53 (38%) patients, atypical symptoms of GORD in 31 (22%), and nonspecific upper gastrointestinal symptoms in 56 (40%). Pathological acid reflux was found in 43 (31%) patients. Of them, 29 (67%) had typical GORD symptoms, 7 (16%) had atypical symptoms, and 7 (16%) had non-specific upper gastrointestinal symptoms. No significant association was found between endoscopy and pHmetry results. CONCLUSION: Oesophageal pH monitoring helped to establish a cause for the morbidity in a significant number of patients with GORD symptoms, but not in the majority of patients referred for the test. In our experience the investigation does not seem to be optimally used as a diagnostic tool.




Ferdinandis, T. G., Amarasiri, L., & De Silva, H. J. (2007). Use of ambulatory oesophageal pH monitoring to diagnose gastrooesophageal reflux disease. The Ceylon Medical Journal, 52(4), 130–132.

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