H. pylori Therapy Effective in Half of Treated Children

Eradication does not appear to influence iron stores

MONDAY, April 11 (HealthDay News) -- A novel eradication therapy for Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) was effective in only half of asymptomatic children tested; regardless, there were no changes in iron stores among all members of the four-arm group, though children whose infection was eradicated had higher serum ferritin levels, according to two articles published in the March issue of the Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition.

Carmen A. Prieto-Jimenez, M.D., of the University of Texas School of Public Health in El Paso, and colleagues randomized 110 asymptomatic children with H. pylori to quadruple sequential 10-day eradication therapy plus iron supplementation, eradication therapy plus placebo, iron supplementation plus placebo, or placebo alone. They found eradication therapy to be effective in half the full treatment group, and found no difference in cure rates between the group receiving iron supplements and the placebo group.

Victor M. Cardenas, M.D., Ph.D., also of the University of Texas School of Public Health in El Paso, and colleagues studied the same group of children to see whether changes in iron stores among non-iron-deficient children followed the eradication of H. pylori infection. They found no difference across the four groups in changes in iron stores, but they did find that children whose H. pylori had been successfully eradicated had an average increase in serum ferritin three times that of children who remained infected.

"In this double-blind randomized trial, the first among non-iron-deficient, asymptomatic H. pylori-infected children living in the contiguous United States, we found no effect of H. pylori eradication regarding changes in iron stores. However, those who had their infection eradicated at follow-up had a significantly larger increase in serum ferritin from baseline," Cardenas and colleagues conclude.

The researchers received a donation of lansoprazole and placebo from Takeda Pharmaceuticals, and one researcher disclosed financial ties to Meretek Diagnostics.

Abstract - Prieto-Jimenez
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Abstract - Cardenas
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