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Title: Abdominal pain-predominant functional gastrointestinal diseases in children and adolescents: prevalence, symptomatology, and association with emotional stress
Authors: Devanarayana, N.M.
Mettananda, S.
Liyanarachchi, C.
Nanayakkara, N.
Mendis, N.
Perera, N.
Rajindrajith, S.
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins
Citation: Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. 2011; 53(6): 659-65
Abstract: BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGD) are common among children, but little is known regarding their prevalence in developing countries. We assessed the prevalence of abdominal pain-predominant FGD, in addition to the predisposing factors and symptomatology, in Sri Lankan children. PATIENTS AND METHODS: A cross-sectional survey was conducted among a randomly selected group of 10- to 16-year-olds in 8 randomly selected schools in 4 provinces in Sri Lanka. A validated, self-administered questionnaire was completed by children independently in an examination setting. FGD were diagnosed using Rome III criteria. RESULTS: A total of 2180 questionnaires were distributed and 2163 (99.2%) were included in the analysis (1189 [55%] boys, mean age 13.4 years, standard deviation 1.8 years). Of them, 270 (12.5%) had at least 1 abdominal pain-predominant FGD. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) was seen in 107 (4.9%), functional dyspepsia in 54 (2.5%), functional abdominal pain in 96 (4.4%), and abdominal migraine (AM) in 21 (1.0%) (2 had AM and functional dyspepsia, 6 had AM and IBS). Extra intestinal symptoms were more common among affected children (P < 0.05). Abdominal pain-predominant FGD were higher in girls and those exposed to stressful events (P < 0.05). Prevalence negatively correlated with age (r = -0.05, P = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Abdominal pain-predominant FGD affects 12.5% of children ages 10 to 16 years and constitutes a significant health problem in Sri Lanka. IBS is the most common FGD subtype present. Abdominal pain-predominant FGD are higher in girls and those exposed to emotional stress. Prevalence of FGD decreased with age. Extra intestinal symptoms are more frequent in affected children.
ISSN: 0277-2116 (Print)
1536-4801 (Electronic)
Appears in Collections:Journal/Magazine Articles

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