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H. pylori More Common in Children, African Americans


BOGALUSA, LA - Researchers studying the ulcer causing bacterium Helicobacter pylori have found infection rates are more prevalent in African Americans and children.

A team from the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston examined 224 children, born in 1975-1976, living in the Bogalusa, Louisiana. They were studied frequently until 1996. Within the group, 44 percent were African American and 49 percent were male. The study found that children aged 4 to 5 had the highest rate of H. pylori seroconversion. The African American children were three times more likely to experience seroconversion than the white children.

The researchers concluded healthcare workers should pay particular attention to young children with symptoms of H. pylori infection to prevent the development of peptic ulcers, gastric cancer or gastric B-cell lymphoma.

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