About 螺旋菌 - Helicobacter pylori

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Helicobacter pylori is a Gram-negative, microaerophilic bacteria, these bacteria survive in the stomach and duodenum area. It can cause mild chronic inflammation of the gastric mucosa, or even lead to gastric and duodenal ulcers and gastric cancer. More than 80% of the carriers do not show symptoms. According to studies, more than 50% of the population in the world having Helicobacter pylori in their digestive system.

Testing is most often done to diagnose H pylori infection:
If you currently have a stomach or duodenal ulcer
If you had a stomach or duodenal ulcer in the past and were never tested for H pylori
After treatment for H pylori infection, to make sure there are no more bacteria

There are several methods to test for H pylori infection.

1.) Breath Test (Carbon Isotope-urea Breath Test, or UBT)

-Up to 2 weeks before the test, you need to stop taking antibiotics, bismuth medicines such as Pepto-Bismol, and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs).
-During the test, you swallow a special substance that has urea. Urea is a waste product the body produces as it breaks down protein. The urea used in the test has been made harmlessly radioactive.
-If H pylori are present, the bacteria convert the urea into carbon dioxide, which is detected and recorded in  your exhaled breath after 10 minutes.
-This test can identify almost all people who have H pylori. It can also be used to check that the H pylori infection has been fully treated.

2.) Blood Tests

-Blood tests are used to measure antibodies to H pylori.  Antibodies are proteins made by the body’s immune system when it detects harmful substances such as bacteria.
-Blood tests for H pylori can only tell if your body has H pylori antibodies. It cannot tell  if you have a current infection or how long you have had it. This is because the test can be  positive for years even if the infection is cured. As a result, blood tests cannot be used to see if the infection has been cured after treatment.

3.) Stool Test

-A stool test can detect traces of H pylori in the feces.
-This test can be used to diagnose the infection and confirm that it has been cured after treatment.

4.) Biopsy

-A tissue sample, called biopsy taken from the stomach lining is the most accurate way to tell if you have an H pylori infection.
-To remove the tissue sample,  you have a procedure called endoscopy. The procedure is done in the hospital.
-Usually a biopsy is done if endoscopy is needed for other reasons. Reasons include diagnosing the ulcer, treating  bleeding, or making sure there is no cancer.

Breath test

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