Background: The rate of Helicobacter pylori is decreasing in the developed countries, but few long-term studies are available from the United States. We retrospectively assessed the annual H. pylori infection rate in symptomatic children seen in our clinic over a 13-year study period.
Study: A retrospective analysis of all children who had histologic diagnosis of H. pylori infection between January 1993 and December 2005 in our pediatric gastroenterology clinic was performed. The annual infection rate and the overall infection rate were calculated.
Results: A total of 1743 upper endoscopy reports were reviewed, of which 212 (12.1%) were diagnosed with H. pylori infection. A significant decrease in mean annual H. pylori infection rate was noted in the last 6 years of the study period (2000 to 2005), compared with the first 7 years (1993 to 1999) (18.2% vs. 7.3%, respectively; P=0.001).
Conclusions: The incidence of H. pylori infection in symptomatic children in our clinic is decreasing. A national multicenter study will be needed to assess whether this drop is a local phenomenon or a national trend.