Saudi Journal of Gastroenterology
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Year : 2006  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21-26

Helicobacter pylori seropositivity in children with chronic disease in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Consultant Pediatrition, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, P.O. box 17818, Jeddah 21494, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Soad M Jaber
Consultant Pediatrition, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, P.O. box 17818, Jeddah 21494
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1319-3767.27740

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Background : Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is an important pathogen in gastrointestinal disorders. Seroprevalence among asymptomatic and chronically diseased children in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia was determined to gain insight into its prevalence. Methods : Serum samples obtained from 1432 children; 543 asymptomatic and 889 chronically diseased children (diabetes, chronic asthma, chronic hemolytic anemia, neurological impairment and Down's syndrome); were tested by ELIZA for H. pylori IgG antibodies. Demographic data obtained including nationality, gender, age and disease status. Results : One hundred and twenty eight (23.6%) of 543 asympatomatic children were seropositive with no significant difference in seroprevalence of infection between Saudi and non-Saudi (p<0.09) and between boys and girls (p<0.67), but significant rise was notice with increasing age (p<0.001). An increase in risk of H. pylori among chronically diseased children was observed (diabetes: 34.4%, chronic asthma 20.4%, chronic hemolytic anemia: 31.7%, neurological impairment: 32.1%, and Down's syndrome: 29.2%) which increased significantly in chronic anemia and neurological impairment (p<0.01 and p<0.05) compared to controls. The prevalence did not differ according to nationality and gender but significantly increased with age in chronic asthma, chronic anemia and neurological impairment (p<0.01 for all) and also increased significantly with duration of illness, number of blood transfusions, number of hospital admission and mode of feeding. Conclusion : Infection with H. pylori seems to occur early in life and its prevalence increased with age in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The risk of H. pylori infection was significantly increased within children suffering from chronic hemolytic anemia; neurological impairment compared to controls and was significantly related to severity of the chronic disease.

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