The researchers investigated whether Helicobacter pylori may protect against gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
They reported their findings in the November issue of Gastroenterology.
H. pylori-positive patients with at least a 1-year history of heartburn, with a normal endoscopy or Grade A esophagitis, were recruited to the prospective trial.
Patients were randomized to 20 mg omeprazole, 250 mg clarithromycin, and 500 mg tinidazole twice a day for 1 week, or 20 mg omeprazole twice a day and identical placebos.
A second concurrently recruited control group of H. pylori-negative patients were given open label 20 mg omeprazole twice a day for 1 week.
All patients received 20 mg omeprazole twice a day for the following 3 weeks and 20 mg omeprazole once daily for a further 4 weeks.
|GERD relapse rates were the same for the antibiotic and placebo groups.
| Gastroenterology |
Omeprazole was discontinued at 8 weeks and patients were followed up for a further 10 months.
A relapse was defined as moderate or severe reflux symptoms.
The researchers determined H. pylori eradication by 13C-urea breath test.
The H. pylori-positive cases were randomized to antibiotics (n = 93) or placebo (n = 97).
Relapse of GERD occurred in 83% of each of the antibiotic, placebo, and H. pylori-negative groups during the 12-month study period.
There was found to be no statistical difference between the two H. pylori-positive groups or between the 3 groups in the time to first relapse.
Two patients in each group developed grade B esophagitis at 12 months.
Author Paul Moayyedi, of the General Infirmary, Leeds, concluded on behalf of his group, "H. pylori eradication therapy does not seem to influence relapse rates in GERD patients."