Most Helicobacter pylori infections occur during childhood, but the health effects of childhood infection are poorly understood.
In this study, a team of researchers from the United States and Peru investigated whether growth decreases in the 2 months after acute H. pylori seroconversion.
The team performed a nested case-control study among children 6 months to 12 years of age in a community on the outskirts of Lima, Peru.
Health interviews were completed daily and anthropometric measurements were taken monthly.
|H. pylori infection attenuates weight gain in children aged 2 years or older, only.|
|Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition |
The team also collected sera every 4 months to test for H. pylori immunoglobulin G.
They compared 2-month height and weight gains of seroconverters with the gains of sex, age, and size-matched seronegative controls.
The researchers found that in the 2 months after H. pylori infection, 26 seroconverters gained a median of 24% less weight than 26 matched controls.
Multivariate analysis revealed that H. pylori infection attenuated weight gain in children aged 2 years or older, only. This decrease was not explained by increased diarrhea.
Dr Douglas Passaro's team concluded that, "H. pylori seroconversion is associated with a slowing of weight gain in children aged 2 years or older".
They added that the, "Reasons for this finding merit additional study".