The effect of Ramadan fast on the incidence of renal colic emergency department visits

I. Sagy, V. Zeldetz, D. Halperin, M. Abu Tailakh, V. Novack

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Background: Renal colic (RC) is one of the most common reasons for emergency department (ED) visits. Although RC is associated with high ambient temperature and with physiological changes that occur during fast, the literature on between Ramadan and RC incidence is scarce. Aim: To investigate the association of ED visits with RC during Ramadan fast. Methods: We obtained health data of patients visited the ED of a large tertiary centre during the years 2004-15, with a primary diagnosis of RC. To estimate the association of RC and Ramadan, we utilized bi-weekly RC incidence Poisson models adjusted for ambient temperature and seasonality in two ethnic groups residing in the region: Muslims and Jews. Results: We identified 10 435 unique patients with 18 163 ED visits with primary diagnosis of RC. Although Muslims represent 18.5% of the population in the region, approximately 25% of the ED visits with RC attributed to this group. There was a positive and significant association of temperature and ED visits within all subgroups after adjusting for seasons. Positive association with Ramadan was observed during the first 2 weeks of fast within Muslims (R.R 1.27, 95% C.I 1.03-1.50) but not within Jewish community (R.R 1.061, 95% C.I 0.855-1.238). Conclusion: Our study demonstrates a significant and positive association between RC and Ramadan, while controlling to ambient temperature. In view of these findings, different prevention strategies should be investigated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)571-576
Number of pages6
JournalQJM - Monthly Journal of the Association of Physicians
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (all)


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