As available data on Helicobacter pylori infection in patients with diabetes are scattered and discordant, we evaluated the prevalence of H. pylori and its relationship to dyspeptic symptoms in adult patients with diabetes and subjects with dyspepsia. H. pylori infection (evaluated using the 13C urea breath test) and dyspeptic symptoms (nausea, bloating, and epigastric distress) were investigated in 71 consecutive diabetic outpatients; the presence of gross lesions, histologic gastritis, and Helicobacter was verified in the patients with a positive urea test who agreed to undergo upper gastrointestinal tract endoscopy. Seventy-one age- and gender-matched subjects with dyspepsia were used as controls. Helicobacter pylori infection was detected in 49 (69%) patients with diabetes and in 33 (46%) subject with dyspepsia (p = 0.007). Helicobacter pylori was present in 27 (77%) of 35 patients with diabetes with dyspeptic symptoms and in 22 (61%) of 36 patients without dyspeptic symptoms. Endoscopy revealed peptic ulcers in 13 of 23 patients; H. pylori infection was histologically confirmed in the gastric antrum of all patients with diabetes, and in the body of the stomach in 74%. The significantly higher prevalence of H. pylori infection in the patients with diabetes may partially explain their dyspeptic symptoms. The high prevalence of H. pylori infection, esophagitis, and peptic ulcers found in our patients with diabetes (with or without dyspepsia) suggests that this population should be considered "at risk" for H. pylori infection and suitable candidates for treatment.
- Helicobacter pylori
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