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Helicobacter. 2004;9 Suppl 1:49-56.

Helicobacter pylori infection in pediatrics.

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  • 1Universit├Ątsklinik f├╝r Kinder und Jugendheilkunde, Waehringer Guertel, Vienna, Austria.


The proposed route of Helicobacter pylori transmission appears to be fecal-oral, oral-oral and gastro-oral, yet, a number of studies challenged these hypotheses in 2003. The use of the stool antigen test and[13]-C urea breath testing were the tests of choice for diagnosis and 'test for cure' of H. pylori in Europe in 2003 but have not yet become accepted standard of care in North America. Pediatric H. pylori consensus guidelines are not yet revised; upper endoscopy and biopsy remain the gold standard for diagnosis of pediatric H. pylori infection. In addition to stronger evidence supporting the role of host influences of H. pylori-associated gastric cancer risk, compelling evidence was provided for the role of H. pylori in iron deficiency anemia of childhood. Antibiotic resistance remains a problem in conferring treatment failure and 2003 studies indicate that macrolide resistance is higher in children than in adults. Treatment with proton pump inhibitor-based triple therapy for 10-14 days remains the mainstay for eradication of H. pylori in childhood. Finally, multinational studies are needed to develop screening guidelines for childhood infection to avoid long-term severe gastroduodenal disease sequelae.

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