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Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2004 Feb 15;19(4):407-14.

Sequential treatment for Helicobacter pylori does not share the risk factors of triple therapy failure.

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Gastroenterology Unit, Ospedali Riuniti, Foggia, Italy.



Predicting factors for the outcome of conventional Helicobacter pylori triple therapy have been identified. Of these, the presence of the CagA gene is a strong predictor of successful treatment. Our preliminary data show that this factor becomes irrelevant when sequential therapy is used.


To identify predicting factors for the outcome of H. pylori eradication using two therapeutic schemes (triple and sequential) of equal duration (10 days).


Ninety-six patients with H. pylori infection were randomly assigned to receive one of the following therapeutic schemes: group A: rabeprazole (20 mg b.d.) plus amoxicillin (1 g b.d.) for 5 days, followed by rabeprazole (20 mg b.d.) plus tinidazole (500 mg b.d.) and clarithromycin (500 mg b.d.) for a further 5 days; group B: rabeprazole (20 mg b.d.) plus amoxicillin (1 g b.d.) and clarithromycin (500 mg b.d.) for 10 days. Age, sex, smoking, endoscopic and histological findings, and CagA and VacA status were considered as candidates for a model of multivariate analysis which used therapeutic outcome as the dependent variable. CagA and VacA status were assessed by polymerase chain reaction on DNA isolated from gastric antral specimens.


The sequential scheme was significantly more effective than prolonged triple therapy (P < 0.05). Smoking (P < 0.001) and the absence of the CagA gene (P < 0.05) were significantly associated with the failure of triple therapy, but the effectiveness of sequential treatment was not predicted by these factors.


Our data suggest that sequential therapy is not affected by bacterial and host factors which have, until now, predicted the outcome of conventional eradication treatments.

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