Recent Advances in the Treatment of Helicobacter pylori Infection

Author(s): Antonio Bergamaschi, Andrea Magrini, Antonio Pietroiusti

Journal Name: Recent Patents on Anti-Infective Drug Discovery
Continued as Recent Advances in Anti-Infective Drug Discovery

Volume 2 , Issue 3 , 2007

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The approach to the treatment of Helicobacter pylori infection has changed during the last years. In fact, during the last decade, the success rate of usual eradication regimens, based on a proton pump inhibitor plus clarithromycin associated with amoxicillin or metronidazole, declined from over 90% to about 80%, a critical threshold under which the eradication rate is considered unsatisfactory, according to current guidelines. This finding is mainly due to the raising prevalence of clarithromycin resistance, which is in turn linked to the widespread use of this antibiotic for respiratory tract infections. Therefore, obtaining a personal history negative for a previous use of macrolides is now mandatory, before administering clarithromycin-based antibiotic therapy. Should history data be uncertain, local resistance rates (if available) may be considered, with levels higher than 20% precluding the use of clarithromycin. In this case, alternative antibiotic combinations, previously used in the rare instances of failure of clarithromycin-based therapy, should be used. We examined also the possible additional beneficial effect of some novel non antibiotic agents such as lactoferrin, probiotics and natural substances. Other advances in the treatment of the infection are represented by the discovery that some extragastric disorders such as unexplained iron deficiency anemia and idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, may be causally linked to Helicobacter pylori, and that eradication therapy may lead to their regression in many cases. Finally, some “gray areas” (nonulcer dyspepsia, concomitant use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) which are the subject of debate as far the indication to treatment is concerned, have been discussed.

Keywords: Helicobacter pylori, clarithromycin resistance, novel antibiotic combinations, novel indications to treatment, novel nonantibiotic agents

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Article Details

Year: 2007
Page: [197 - 205]
Pages: 9
DOI: 10.2174/157489107782497281
Price: $65

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