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Aust Dent J. 1998 Feb;43(1):35-9.

The prevalence of Helicobacter pylori in practising dental staff and dental students.

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  • 1Monash University, Department of Medicine, Mornington Peninsula Hospital, Victoria.


Recent studies suggest Helicobacter pylori is spread by faecal-oral or oral-oral transmission. Gastroenterologists who are exposed to gastric secretions and saliva have a high prevalence of H. pylori infection. Venous blood was obtained from 92 dentists, 40 dental nurses, 33 fifth year and 30 first year dental students. An ELISA assay was used to detect H. pylori IgG antibodies. Results were compared with an age and sex matched normal population. The prevalence of H. pylori infection in dentists, dental nurses, fifth year dental students and first year dental students were 23 per cent, 18 per cent, 18 per cent and 16 per cent, respectively. There were no significant differences when compared with the normal population controls. The prevalence of H. pylori antibody was not significantly increased with years of practice or patient contact time in dentists and dental nurses. Helicobacter pylori infection is uncommon in dental professionals working in the oral cavity.

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