Helicobacter pylori in childhood

Helicobacter pylori is responsible for one of the most frequently encountered infectious diseases worldwide, in children as well as in adults. Moreover, epidemiologic data suggest that the actual infection causing gastric mucosal inflammation is mainly acquired in childhood, in subjects originating from lower socio-economic groups. In the absence of duodenal ulcer disease, H. pylori gastritis does not appear to be associated with any symptoms in children. However, when discussing the need for its eradication one also has to be aware of an increased risk for developing gastric cancer and gastric lymphoma in late adulthood, in the presence of a long lasting HP infection, ie. the one acquired in early childhood. Currently there are no guidelines on the need to treat children, and a consensus is urgently required. Finally, the paediatric age group represents the ideal target population for studies concerning the pathogenesis, epidemiology and the need for eradication treatment of Helicobacter pylori infection.
Category: Abstracts
Volume: Vol. 42, No 3,4 july - december 1998
Authors: S. Kolaček, M. Percl
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