Pylori vs Campylobacter Pylori

H. pylori was once grouped with the campylobacter species of bacteria, Campylobacter pylori. Medical researchers have now placed H. pylori in its own category, noting its role in causing gastritis, stomach ulcers, and possibly two types of stomach cancer. In industrialized countries, the infection is rare in children, although risk of infection is higher for persons who live in overcrowded or unsanitary conditions.

Diagnosis

Doctors can make the diagnosis of an H. pylori infection by using many different types of tests. They may look at the stomach lining directly with an endoscope, and take samples of the lining to be checked in the laboratory for microscopic signs of infection and for H. pylori bacteria. They may also conduct blood or a breath test.

Treatment

Doctors treat H. pylori infections using antibiotics. Because the bacteria may not be killed with a sin gle antibiotic, a combination of antibiotics may be given. The doctor will probably also prescribe antacid medication and medicine to block production of stomach acid. If a child has symptoms of bleeding from the stomach or small intestine, these symptoms will be treated in a hospital. Over time, with proper treatment H. pylori gastritis and stomach ulcers (especially ulcers in the duodenum, a portion of the small intestine) can often be cured.

H. pylori infection can be cured with antibiotics. The pediatrician may also give antacids or acid-suppressing drugs to neutralize or block production of stomach acids. One way to help soothe the abdominal pain of H. pylori infections is by following a regular meal schedule. This means planning meals so that a child's stomach does not remain empty for long periods. Eating five or six smaller meals each day may be best, followed by some time to rest after each meal. Aspirin, ibuprofen, or anti-inflammatory drugs should be avoided because these may irritate the stomach or cause stomach bleeding. If a child vomits blood or has vomit that looks like coffee, a doctor should be called immediately.

Prevention

There is no vaccine against H. pylori. Although research suggests that infection is passed from person to person, scientists do not really know exactly how this happens, so it is difficult to present prevention guidelines. However, it is always important to wash hands thoroughly, eat food that has been properly prepared, and drink water from a safe source.

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