Comparison of the efficacy of 1-day high-dose quadruple therapy versus 7-day triple therapy for treatment of Helicobacter pylori infection


Professor Shu Dong XIAO, Shanghai Renji Hospital, Shanghai Institute of Digestive Disease, 145 Shan Dong Road, Shanghai 200001, China. Email:


BACKGROUND:  The proton pump inhibitor (PPI)-based 7-day triple therapy is the regimen with the highest cure rates for eradication of Helicobacter pylori infection and has been recommended as the first-line regimen in the world. It had been reported that a 1-day quadruple therapy could also successfully cure 95% of the H. pylori infected patients.

OBJECTIVES:  To observe the efficacy of 1-day high-dose quadruple therapy versus 7-day triple therapy for treatment of H. pylori infection, and to observe side-effects of the two different regimens.

METHODS:  This randomized, open, parallel-controlled study was conducted at Renji Hospital between November 2004 to March 2005. A total of 80 consecutive patients with non-ulcer dyspepsia, who were H. pylori positive proven by both rapid urease test and histology were included and randomly assigned to 1-day quadruple therapy or 7-day triple therapy. Thirty-nine patients were administered with 1-day high-dose quadruple therapy including esomeprazole 40 mg b.i.d., colloidal bismuth subcitrate 440 mg q.i.d., amoxicillin 2 g q.i.d. and metronidazole (400 mg q.i.d.) for 1 day. Forty-one patients received a standard 7-day triple therapy consisting of esomeprazole 20 mg b.i.d., clarithromycin 500 mg b.i.d. and amoxicillin 1 g b.i.d. for 7 days. The eradication rates were evaluated by the 13C-urea breath test at least 4 weeks after completion of a course treatment.

RESULTS:  Seventy-seven patients completed the trial and three patients dropped out. The eradication rates in the 1-day therapeutic group and the 7-day therapeutic group were 39.5% (15/38) and 84.6% (33/39), respectively. There was a statistically significant difference between the two groups (P < 0.0001). Short-lasting and self-limiting side effects including thirst, a metallic taste, diarrhea and abdominal pain were reported in three patients (7.9%) in the 1-day group and seven patients (18%) in the 7-day group (P = 0.31).

CONCLUSIONS:  A 1-day high-dose quadruple therapy with amoxicillin, metronidazole, bismuth salt, and esomeprazole is not effective for eradication of H. pylori compared with the standard 7-day triple therapy.