There is a paucity of published data regarding upper gastrointestinal diseases in Ugandans with upper gastrointestinal
symptoms referred for endoscopy.
To study the presenting complaints, pathology and Helicobacter pylori
prevalence among patients with upper
gastrointestinal symptoms in South-Western Uganda.
Patients presenting with upper gastrointestinal symptoms underwent upper endoscopy and a urease test for Helicobacter
, all suspicious lesions were biopsied for histopathology review as appropriate.
The most common presenting complaints were epigastric pain (51.6%), dysphagia (13.6%) and odynophagia
(7.1%). The most common endoscopy finding was gastritis (40.2%), followed by normal examination (15.2%), oesophageal
cancer (13.6%), gastric ulcer (7.6%) and gastric cancer (7.1%). Patients older than 40 years (n=110) had significant findings
including gastritis (50.9%), oesophageal cancer (22.7%) and gastric cancer (11.8%). However in younger patients, with the
age range of 18-40 years (n=74), most examinations were normal (92.9%). Of the 176 patients able to undergo Helicobacter
testing 75.6% were positive. Helicobacter pylori
infection was associated with statistically significant increase in
gastritis, oesophageal cancer, gastric ulcer, gastric cancer, and duodenal ulcers (p-values< 0.05).
Gastritis, ulcerative disease, and upper gastrointestinal malignancies are common in South-Western Ugandans
and are associated with a high prevalence of Helicobacter pylori