Appropriate acid suppression for optimal healing of duodenal ulcer and gastro-oesophageal reflux disease.
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Comparisons of the effectiveness of treatments for healing duodenal ulcer are essential to determine optimal management strategies for both economic analysis and quality-of-life evaluation. Differences are usually made on the basis of the proportion of ulcers healed at varying time intervals. It has been shown by meta-analysis that healing of duodenal ulcers with antisecretory drugs is directly correlated to the degree of acid suppression. More recently, sophisticated meta-analysis of 24-hour intragastric acidity data and clinical trials of antisecretory drugs has demonstrated that the optimal degree and duration of gastric acid suppression for healing duodenal ulcer can be achieved by an aggregate time above pH 3 of 18-20 hours/day. These conditions predict 100% ulcer healing at 4 weeks. Antisecretory drug regimens that approach these criteria should achieve faster healing than other agents, with a concomitant acceleration of symptom resolution. Regression analysis was performed on the healing-time curves for each drug class to determine the rate of ulcer healing per week. The mean proportion of ulcers healed, irrespective of treatment duration, was highest for omeprazole, which also provided a significantly faster rate of duodenal ulcer healing than all other drug classes (p < 0.001). It has recently been shown that healing of erosive oesophagitis with antisecretory drugs is directly correlated with both the duration of acid suppression over the 24-hour period (p < 0.05) and the elevation of intra-oesophageal pH above 4. Furthermore, oesophageal acid exposure time can be normalized by maintaining the intra-oesophageal pH above 4 for at least 96% of the 24-hour period.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
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