Relevance of antibiotic sensitivities in predicting failure of omeprazole, clarithromycin, and tinidazole to eradicate Helicobacter pylori
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Omeprazole 20 mg once (o.d.) or twice daily (b.d.), clarithromycin 250 mg b.d., and tinidazole 500 mg b.d. for 7 days (OCT) is an effective regimen against Helicobacter pylori, but the effect of 5-nitroimidazole resistance is unclear. We aimed to evaluate this using the disc diffusion technique (Mast Diagnostics, Bootle, UK) and E-test (Cambridge Diagnostics Services, Cambridge, UK) to assess 5-nitroimidazole resistance. H. pylori was cultured from antral biopsies of infected patients, as determined by 13C-urea breath test (13C-UBT), histology, and/or rapid urease test. Patients were prescribed OCT and H. pylori eradication was assessed by 13C-UBT at least 4 weeks after completion of therapy. Antibiotic sensitivities to metronidazole and clarithromycin were evaluated by the disc diffusion method and by the measurement of minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) using the E-test. One hundred and forty-one H. pylori-infected patients were enrolled in the study and the organism was successfully cultured from 119 patients (84%). The overall eradication rate was 125/141 (89%). OCT was successful in 62/69 (90%) patients harboring fully sensitive strains of H. pylori, compared with 42/45 (93%) of patients with strains that were resistant to metronidazole alone (P = 0.74, Fisher's exact test). MIC was assessed in 22 samples. Using a cut-off point of >32 microg/ml to define metronidazole resistance eradication rates were higher against sensitive (9/12; 75%) than resistant (3/10; 30%) strains (P = 0.08, Fisher's exact test). 5-Nitroimidazole resistance assessed by the disc diffusion technique is not helpful in predicting OCT failure, but the E-test may be of value.
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