No evidence of an association between Helicobacter pylori infection and Raynaud phenomenon

V. Savarino, A. Sulli, P. Zentilin, M. R. Mele, M. Cutolo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Raynaud phenomenon (RP) is a vasospastic condition that manifests itself as cold-induced ischemic attacks of the fingers with skin color changes. It may be classified as primary (PRP) or secondary (SRP), if associated to other diseases, mainly connective-tissue diseases. Recently, the association between PRP and Helicobacter pylori infection has been reported. The aims of this study were to evaluate the prevalence of gastric H. pylori infection in a large group of patients affected by PRP and SRP and to assess whether it was more evident in patients with more recent onset of RP. Methods: Ninety-eight consecutive patients (93 F and 5 M), referring to our videocapillaroscopic service for the diagnosis of vascular and connective-tissue diseases, were evaluated. Forty-nine of them were affected by PRP and 49 by SRP. Patients were classified as having PRP on the basis of normal serological and immunological findings, normal videocapillaroscopic examination and exclusion of other conditions inducing RP. H. pylori infection was diagnosed by 13C-urea breath test (UBT). Two groups of 49 age-and sex-matched controls, respectively, were also evaluated. Results: Patients with SRP resulted significantly older than those with PRP (P <0.006). UBT was found positive in 22/49 patients with PRP (45%) and in 29/49 patients with SRP (59%). The positivity of the respective control groups was 36% and 53% (P = NS). There was no higher prevalence of H. pylori infection in patients with RP lasting for less than 4 years. Conclusions: The results do not confirm the previously reported high prevalence of H. pylori infection in patients with PRP. A high association was not even found between the presence of the microorganism and SRP. There was no difference in the prevalence of H. priori infection among the subgroups with more recent onset of both PRP and SRP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1251-1254
Number of pages4
JournalScandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • Helicobacter pylori infection
  • Raynaud phenomenon
  • Urea breath test

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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