Background: We systematically reviewed all available data in the literature to determine the overall eradication rates of currently advised Helicobacter pylori eradication regimens and to resolve conflicting evidence on the impact of antimicrobial resistance on the eradication rates.
Methods: A comprehensive search of all published trials on H. pylori eradication therapy was carried out via an electronic database search, hand-searching and checking reference lists of pharmaceutical companies and other reviews. Full papers and abstracts in the English language which study currently advised eradication regimes were included.
Results: 770 study-arms were analysed. Mean eradication rates for bismuth based triple, proton pump inhibitor triple, quadruple and ranitidine bismuth citrate combination therapies vary from 65 to 92%. In case of nitroimidazole resistance, a drop in efficacy of up to 50% was found for bismuth-based triple and proton pump inhibitor-based triple therapies. For quadruple therapy, a significant difference in efficacy was found in the equal-effects analysis; however, this could not be confirmed in the random-effects analysis. In case of clarithromycin resistance, a mean drop in efficacy of 56% was found for one- and two-week clarithromycin containing proton pump inhibitor-triple therapies and of 58% for two-week ranitidine bismuth citrate combined with clarithromycin therapies. For ranitidine bismuth citrate combined with clarithromycin and nitroimidazole, no difference in efficacy was found in case of nitroimidazole or clarithromycin resistance, but data are still scarce.
Conclusions: The cure rate with most regimens dropped significantly, in case of nitroimidazole-resistant strains, compared to nitroimidazole-susceptible strains. In case of clarithromycin resistance, the efficacy of most regimens is also decreased; however, data are still scarce. These data should allow physicians to make a better choice of an appropriate therapy for their patients.