Indexed on: 17 Mar '04Published on: 17 Mar '04Published in: Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics
To perform a meta-analysis comparing the efficacy of Helicobacter pylori eradication therapy vs. antisecretory non-eradication therapy for the prevention of recurrent bleeding from peptic ulcer.A search was made of the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register, MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL and several congresses for controlled clinical trials comparing the efficacy of H. pylori eradication therapy vs. antisecretory non-eradication therapy for the prevention of peptic ulcer re-bleeding. Studies with all patients taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs were excluded. Extraction and quality assessment of the studies were performed by two reviewers.In the first meta-analysis, the mean percentage of re-bleeding in the H. pylori eradication therapy group was 4.5%, compared with 23.7% in the non-eradication therapy group without long-term antisecretory therapy [odds ratio, 0.18; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.09-0.37; 'number needed to treat' (NNT), 5; 95% CI, 4-8]. In the second meta-analysis, the re-bleeding rate in the H. pylori eradication therapy group was 1.6%, compared with 5.6% in the non-eradication therapy group with maintenance antisecretory therapy (odds ratio, 0.25; 95% CI, 0.08-0.76; NNT, 20; 95% CI, 12-100). When only patients with successful H. pylori eradication were included, the re-bleeding rate was 1%.The treatment of H. pylori infection is more effective than antisecretory non-eradication therapy (with or without long-term maintenance antisecretory treatment) in the prevention of recurrent bleeding from peptic ulcer. Consequently, all patients with peptic ulcer bleeding should be tested for H. pylori, and eradication therapy should be prescribed to infected patients.