Eradication of Helicobacter pylori infection in the management of patients with dyspepsia and non-ulcer dyspepsia.
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Although H. pylori infection has been recognized as a major etiological agent for the development of chronic active gastritis, duodenal ulcer and benign non-NSAID related gastric ulcer, its role in the development of symptoms in patients with dyspepsia remains uncertain. Results from population-based epidemiological studies have been conflicting regarding a causal link between H. pylori infection and dyspepsia. Abnormalities in gastric acid secretion may exist in some dyspeptic patients. Whether disordered gastric motility seen in dyspeptic patients is related to the infection is not clear based on the results in the literature. Numerous clinical trials have been undertaken to eradicate H. pylori infection and improve the symptoms in dyspeptic patients; however, the results have been discrepant between studies. Many published studies suffer from methodological problems that have made interpretation difficult. Large, well-conducted, randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trials with long-term follow-up are needed to justify the beneficial effect of H. pylori eradication treatment in dyspeptic patients seen in some small studies. H. pylori eradication therapy is cost-effective in H. pylori-infected dyspeptic patients although this benefit may take a long time to accrue, especially in younger patients.