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Keywords:

  • Helicobacter pylori;
  • peptic ulcer bleeding;
  • H2-receptor antagonist;
  • proton pump inhibitor;
  • upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage;
  • upper gastrointestinal bleeding

Abstract

Aim:  To evaluate the effect of Helicobacter pylori eradication on ulcer bleeding recurrence in a prospective, long-term study including more than 400 patients.

Methods:  Patients with peptic ulcer bleeding were prospectively included. H. pylori infection was confirmed by rapid urease test, histology or 13C-urea breath test. Several eradication regimens were used. Ranitidine 150 mg was administered daily until eradication was confirmed by breath test 8 weeks after completing eradication therapy. Patients with therapy failure received a second or third course of therapy. Patients with eradication success did not receive maintenance anti-ulcer therapy, and were controlled yearly with a repeated breath test.

Results:  Four hundred and twenty-two patients were followed up for at least 12 months, with a total of 906 patient-years of follow up. Mean age was 59 years, and 35% were previous nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) users. Sixty-nine percent had duodenal, 24% gastric, and 7% pyloric ulcer. Recurrence of bleeding was demonstrated in two patients at 1 year (incidence: 0.22% per patient-year of follow up), which occurred after NSAID use in both cases.

Conclusion:  Peptic ulcer rebleeding does not occur in patients with complicated ulcers after H. pylori eradication. Maintenance anti-ulcer (antisecretory) therapy is not necessary if eradication is achieved.