Autoimmune disease as a risk factor for globus pharyngeus: a cross-sectional epidemiological study

L. M. Masterson, I. A. Srouji, P. Musonda, D. G. I. Scott

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4 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To assess the prevalence and severity of globus-type symptoms in individuals who have a prior diagnosis of autoimmune disease.

Design: Cross-sectional questionnaire.

Participants and setting: One hundred and nine patients with autoimmune disease (rheumatoid arthritis, seronegative spondarthritis, connective tissue disease, systemic vasculitis) and 41 patients with non-autoimmune disease (osteoarthritis/osteoporosis) attending a rheumatology tertiary referral clinic at Norfolk & Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. The results from this study were compared to previous published figures in patients with globus pharyngeus (n = 105) and normal population (n = 174).

Main outcome measures: Glasgow Edinburgh Throat Scale questionnaire; Reflux Symptom Index; Anxiety/Depression Scale.

Results: Patients with autoimmune disease demonstrate a significantly higher prevalence for 5/10 symptoms on the Glasgow Edinburgh Throat scale score when compared to the non-autoimmune control group (P ≤ 0.01). This significant difference increases to 9/10 symptoms when compared to published results for the normal population (P = 0.01). No significant difference was found when comparing the autoimmune and non-autoimmune control group reflux symptom index (P = 0.64) or anxiety depression scale (P = 0.71).

Conclusion: Patients with autoimmune disease have a significantly increased prevalence of globus symptoms when compared to the healthy population. A further prospective study is required to decipher the effect of pharmacotherapy as a possible causative factor.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-29
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Otolaryngology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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