The Burden of GERD on Health-related Quality of Life
Systematic Literature Searches
Systematic literature searches were conducted in PubMed and Embase on 1 February 2012 to identify studies on the impact of reflux symptom frequency and/or severity on HRQL. The following search string was used: ('gastroesophageal reflux' OR 'gastro-oesophageal reflux' OR 'heartburn' OR 'GERD' OR 'GORD') AND ('quality of life' OR 'burden of Illness' OR 'generic' OR 'disease specific' OR 'impair' OR 'impairment' OR 'short form health survey' OR 'SF-8' OR 'SF-12' OR 'SF-36' OR 'work productivity and impairment' OR 'WPAI' OR 'psychological and general well being' OR 'PGWB' OR 'quality of life in reflux and dyspepsia' OR 'QOLRAD') AND ('severity' OR 'severe' OR 'frequency' OR 'frequent' OR 'disruptive' OR 'disrupting'). The bibliographies of relevant reviews were also scanned.
Studies were excluded from the review if non-validated questionnaires were used to report on HRQL or if the psychometric evaluation of the HRQL questionnaire was part of the study, if symptom frequency and severity were reported as a combined score only, or if they only included paediatric populations or patients undergoing anti-reflux surgery. Reviews, editorials and studies that were not reported in English were not included. A flow chart of the systematic searches is shown in Figure 1.
Flow chart of literature searches. GERD, gastro-oesophageal reflux disease; HRQL, health-related quality of life.