Prevalence of Helicobacter Pylori Infection in Patients with Digestive Complaints Using Urea Breath Test in Mashhad, Northeast Iran

Mahboobeh Nakhaei Moghaddam


Background: Helicobacter pylori infection is the most common gastrointestinal bacterial disease worldwide. Although using culture is considered as the golden standard method for diagnosis of H. pylori infection, urea breath test is a notable alternative method because it is an easy, quick, and non-invasive approach. The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of H. pylori infection in patients with digestive discomforts using urea breath test in Mashhad County, northeast of Iran.

Methods: The study involved 814 patients, 467 women and 347 men, aged 17-80 years, with gastrointestinal symptom from January 2007 to November 2008. The urea breath test was performed and the patients ingested a solution of isotope labeled urea. The expired air was collected and was analyzed using the Heliprobe breath card (Noster System, Stockholm, Sweden).

Results: The results of the test were positive for 698 out of 814 (85.75%) patients including 403 (86.30%) of women and 295 (85.01%) of men. However, the difference between the two groups was not statistically significant. Positive cases were classified by age. The highest prevalence rate of H. pylori infection was observed among 50-60 years old patients.

Conclusions: The infection of H. pylori is very common among patients who have gastric complain and can be easily diagnosed by noninvasive urea breath test. Since H. pylori infection is related to poor prognosis outcomes such as gastric cancer. Therefore, screening and treatment of infected people especially symptomatic cases using urea breath test is a priority.


Helicobacter pylori; Prevalence; Breath test; Iran

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