BACKGROUND: An occupation-related susceptibility of orchestral wind instrument players to gastro-oesophageal reflux was hypothesized. AIM: To compare reflux symptoms reported by wind instrument players with those reported by players of other instruments. METHODS: A questionnaire was distributed to 1083 musicians (414 wind instrument players and 669 players of other instruments) from 21 Italian orchestras to obtain information on reflux symptoms in the year preceding the survey together with selected individual characteristics and lifestyle habits. Crude and adjusted prevalence rate ratios (PRR) were computed by a model including gender, age, body mass index, smoking status, alcohol consumption and other confounding factors. RESULTS: Wind instrument players reported a higher prevalence of heartburn in the previous year than the other instrument players (adjusted PRR 1.23, CI 95% 1.04-1.46). Wind instrument players also reported higher, although not fully significant, prevalence of regurgitation (adjusted PRR 1.22, CI 95% 0.97-1.54). Flute and double-reed instrument players seem to carry a higher risk of reflux symptoms. CONCLUSIONS: Wind instrument players reported a prevalence of typical reflux symptoms higher than other instrument players.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393-600
Number of pages208
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • reflux disease


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