Helicobacter pylori Colonization in Infants in a Periurban Community in Karachi, Pakistan

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Background:The prevalence and incidence of Helicobacter pylori in children in Pakistan is not known.Objectives:To measure the prevalence and age of acquisition of Helicobacter pylori infection/colonization in infants in a peri-urban community in Karachi, Pakistan.Setting:Field based epidemiologic study in a peri-urban community in Karachi, Pakistan.Methods:Infants aged 1 to 3 months were recruited from a birth cohort from the community. 13C-urea breath test (13C-UBT) was performed on recruitment, and the test was repeated at 2, 3, 6, and 9 months of age.Results:One hundred forty-eight infants were recruited and had 13C-UBT on 319 occasions over a period of 2 years. Two hundred thirty-one = (72%) tests were positive: 80% (49/61) infants at 1 month of age, 79% (33/42) at 2 month of age, 76% (92/121) at 3 month of age, 58% (37/64) at 6 months of age, and 67% (20/30) at 9 months of age.Conclusions:The study reveals an early colonization/infection of infants and a high prevalence of Helicobacter pylori in a peri-urban community in Karachi, Pakistan.

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