Our purpose was to compare the safety and efficacy of lansoprazole 15 mg and 30 mg with placebo in preventing recurrence in 49 patients with a history of gastric ulcer. Within one month, 40% of patients receiving placebo experienced ulcer recurrence compared to 0% and 7% of patients receiving lansoprazole 15 mg and 30 mg, respectively. All placebo patients became symptomatic, experienced ulcer recurrence or withdrew from the study by month 9. As compared to placebo, a significantly (P < 0.001) higher percentage of patients treated with lansoprazole 15 mg (83%) and lansoprazole 30 mg (93%) with healed gastric ulcer disease remained healed at month 12. Of patients asymptomatic at baseline, 100% and 59% of those treated with lansoprazole 15 mg and 30 mg, respectively, remained asymptomatic at month 12. The incidence of adverse events was comparable among the treatment groups. Lansoprazole safely and effectively reduces ulcer recurrence in patients with a history of gastric ulcer disease.