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A Journal on Gastroenterology, Nutrition and Dietetics

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Minerva Gastroenterologica e Dietologica 2000 March;46(1):7-14

language: English, Italian

Helicobacter pylori eradication in elderly patients

Terranova R., Luca S.


Background. The elderly population is rising constantly in industrialised countries. Accord-ing to ISTAT, within the next 15 years the number of over-80-year-olds in Italy will top 2.6 million. In the elderly, the incidence of peptic ulcer tends to increase with age. An important etiological role has recently been attributed to helicobacter pylori (HP) which has been identified as a risk factor for the various forms of gastric cancer.
Methods. The study was carried out in 57 patients (45 with HP+ duodenal ulcer and 12 with HP+ gastric ulcer). Diagnosis was made on the basis of endoscopic tests, histological tests and urea breath test. Patients were treated orally with clarithromycin 500 mg twice a day for 14 days), amoxycillin (1 g twice a day for 14 days) and omeprazole (20 mg once a day for 30 days).
Results. The results showed an eradication of HP in 89% of duodenal ulcer patients and 83.3% of peptic ulcer patients.
Conclusions. The treatment protocol used in this study achieved percentages of eradication that are comparable to those reported by other authors using different protocols; the percentages were sufficiently high for the protocol to be regarded as efficacious and well tolerated by patients. In fact, the scarce incidence of undesirable effects and excellent patient compliance are of particular interest in view of the fact that elderly patients have a higher risk of side-effects.

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