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The clinicopathological and endoscopic features of dyspepsia have not been well studied in Nigeria due to the high cost of gastroscopes and lack of the relevant expertise. This study was designed to highlight these features and possible risk factors. This prospective study was conducted on adult dyspeptic patients who fulfilled the study criteria from November 2007 to December 2008 at a University hospital in Lagos, Nigeria. Demographic and clinical presentation including possible risk factors were obtained through a questionnaire administered by an interviewer followed by an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy and gastric biopsy. Of the 123 subjects who took part in the study, 100 gave their consent to an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy and biopsy. The male:female ratio was 1:1, mean age was 44.98 (SD 15.4) years and the modal age group was 38-47years. The prevalence of dyspepsia was 29% and epigastric pain was the most common presentation. Endoscopic findings were superficial mucosal lesion (21%), peptic ulcer (16%), features of gastroesophageal reflux disease (10%), and gastric cancer (2%), as well normal findings (44%). Non-steroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID) use as a risk factor had a significant association with positive endoscopic findings; relative risk for development of positive endoscopic findings was 1.5% (P =0.03). Histology showed rates of chronic gastritis to be 91% and normal values 9%. The most common type of gastritis was the non-specific form (59.3%), followed by H. Pylori-associated gastritis (36.3%). The topography of gastritis was mainly pangastritis (68.1%) and antral predominant in 23.1%. The prevalence of H. pylori by histology was 41%. The presence of H. pylori was not associated with severity, location or duration of symptoms. H. pylori was, however, found to be a significant contributor to the development of positive endoscopic findings (P=0.01; OR 2.92 95% CI 1.50-3.17). Alarm symptoms were found to be important markers of malignancy. Dyspeptic illness is common,with peak incidence in the 4th decade of life and no gender predilection. Epigastric pain has the most discriminatory value with alarm symptoms in cases of gastric cancer. Risk factors such as NSAID use and H. pylori infection had a very significant impact on endoscopic findings while presence of H. pylori, smoking and alcohol consumption were associated with increased risk of developing chronic gastritis.
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