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Am J Gastroenterol. 2002 Dec;97(12):3015-22.

Changing rates of Helicobacter pylori testing and treatment in patients with peptic ulcer disease.

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Department of Health Sciences Research, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, USA.



The aim of this study was to identify temporal trends in the rate of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) testing, prevalence, and treatment among patients with peptic ulcer disease in Olmsted County, MN, from 1984 through 1997.


All 3317 Olmsted County residents with a clinical diagnosis of peptic ulcer disease at the Mayo Clinic from 1984 through 1997 were identified. The complete medical records of an age-, sex-, and calendar year-stratified random sample were reviewed (n = 720); 298 patients (41%) had confirmed peptic ulcer disease. Changes in proportions of H. pylori testing, infection, and treatment over time were analyzed by logistic regression.


Of the 298 patients with confirmed peptic ulcer disease, 32% were tested for H. pylori; 36% were positive for infection, of whom 66% received antibiotic therapy. The rate of testing for H. pylori increased from 0% in 1984 to 96% in 1997, but the prevalence of infection did not change (36.4% vs 36.5%). The rate of treatment of those infected increased from 0% to 95%. By logistic regression, calendar year was associated with H. pylori testing and treatment but not infection. Recent use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs was reported by 58% of patients, and 44% presented with GI bleeding.


Physicians' practice of testing and treating for H. pylori in patients with confirmed peptic ulcer disease has steadily increased over the past 14 yr. However, in our study, only 36% of these patients were infected with H. pylori, whereas the majority used nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Therefore, testing seems to be more appropriate than empiric treatment in patients with peptic ulcer disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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