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J Infect Dis. 2000 Apr;181(4):1359-63. Epub 2000 Apr 13.

Seroprevalence and ethnic differences in Helicobacter pylori infection among adults in the United States.

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  • 1Epidemiology and Clinical Trials Branch, Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Bethesda, MD 20892-6600, USA.


The seroprevalence of Helicobacter pylori infection was examined in the adult US population and among different ethnic groups. Stored sera from 7465 adult participants in the first phase of the third National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey (1988-1991) were tested with a sensitive and specific IgG ELISA, to diagnose infection. Seroprevalence of H. pylori among all participants was 32. 5%. This increased with age, from 16.7% for persons 20-29 years old to 56.9% for those > or =70 years old. Age-adjusted prevalence was substantially higher among non-Hispanic blacks (52.7%) and Mexican Americans (61.6%) than among non-Hispanic whites (26.2%). After controlling for age and other associated factors, the odds ratios relative to non-Hispanic whites decreased for non-Hispanic blacks, from 3.9 (95% confidence interval [CI], 3.1-4.9) to 3.3 (95% CI, 2. 6-4.2), and for Mexican Americans, from 6.3 (95% CI, 4.8-8.3) to 2.3 (95% CI, 1.6-3.5). The high prevalence of H. pylori infection among non-Hispanic blacks and Mexican Americans is partially explained by other factors associated with infection.

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