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Indexed/Abstracted in: CAB, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
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Oderda G. 1, Marietti M. 2, Pellicano R. 2
1 Medical Sciences, Department of Pediatrics, University of Novara, Novara, Italy;
2 Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, San Giovanni Battista (Molinette) Hospital, Turin, Italy
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection is a large worldwide infection usually acquired during childhood, whose prevalence in pediatric population varies, with lower incidence rates in developed countries compared to developing countries (up to 10-15% and 70%, respectively). Diagnosis can be performed both with endoscopic-based methods and noninvasive diagnostic tests, such as urea breath test and fecal antigen. Current guidelines recommend endoscopic evaluation of the young patients, in order to determine the underlying cause of abdmonal pain. Even in case of suspected functional pain, patient should not be investigated for infection, unless upper endoscopy is performed to rule out organic causes. Nowadays, in pediatric population, applications of noninvasive tests are limited to verifying eradication after therapy and to investigating the presence of infection in asymptomatic patients with first-degree relatives affected by gastric cancer. Since correlation between abdominal pain and H. pylori gastritis, in absence of peptic ulcer disease is still debated, “test and treat” strategy is not recommended in children. As for adults, treatment regimens are based on the combination of proton-pump inhibitor and two or more antibiotics, for 7-14 days, depending on resistance rates of geographic areas.