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Helicobacter. 2007 Aug;12(4):333-40.

Seroprevalence of Helicobacter pylori in South Korea.

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1
Healthcare System GangNam Center, Healthcare Research Institute, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Helicobacter pylori-associated gastrointestinal diseases have been widely recognized. The aims of this study were to investigate the interval change of seropositivity of H. pylori between 1998 and 2005 in Korean adult population and to find the factors related to H. pylori infection.

METHODS:

Between January and December of 2005, a total of 15,916 health check-up subjects (aged > or = 16 years) from all parts of South Korea responded to the questionnaire, and the prevalence of H. pylori was investigated by measuring anti-H pylori IgG antibodies. The seropositivity in asymptomatic subjects (aged > or = 16 years) was compared with that of 1998, which was surveyed by the Korean H. pylori Study Group.

RESULTS:

The overall seropositivity rate (aged > or = 16 years) was 56.0%, and 13.9% of seropositive subjects were found to have a history of H. pylori eradication therapy. With the exclusion of subjects who had a history of H. pylori eradication and current gastrointestinal symptoms, the seropositivity rate of H. pylori became 59.6% in 8020 subjects. Seroprevalence of H. pylori was significantly higher in subjects aged 50-59 years, males, low income group, and subjects from provinces. The seroprevalence in 2005 (59.6%) significantly decreased compared with that of 1998 (66.9%), and the decrease was significant in subjects aged < 70 years, Seoul and Gyeonggi province (which is close to Seoul).

CONCLUSIONS:

The seroprevalence of H. pylori in asymptomatic health check-up adult subjects in 2005 decreased to 59.6% from 66.9% in 1998, probably as a result of the improvement of socioeconomic status and hygiene.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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