Background: Triple therapies combining a double dose of proton pump inhibitor plus two antibiotics are the standard treatment for Helicobacter pylori infection. Some reports suggest that the use of half the dose of proton pump inhibitor is equally effective.
Aim: To compare the efficacy of a single vs. double dose of proton pump inhibitor in triple therapy.
Methods: We conducted a MEDLINE search. The search strategy included the words (pylori) AND (triple, PPI, proton pump, omeprazole, rabeprazole, pantoprazole, lansoprazole, clarithromycin, amoxicillin, amoxycillin or metronidazole). Abstracts of the articles obtained and papers presented at the European Helicobacter pylori Study Group and American Gastroenterological Association congresses from 1996 to 2001 were examined. Inclusion criteria were: (i) randomized studies with at least two branches of triple therapy including a proton pump inhibitor and two standard antibiotics; (ii) branches could differ only in terms of proton pump inhibitor dosage. A meta-analysis was conducted using conventional shareware (Review Manager 4.1).
Results: Thirteen studies met the inclusion criteria with a total of 2391 patients. Cure rates with double doses of proton pump inhibitor were higher in both the intention-to-treat analysis (83.9% vs. 77.7%; Peto odds ratio, 1.51; 95% confidence interval, 1.23-1.85; P < 0.01) and per protocol analysis (89% vs. 81%; Peto odds ratio, 1.96; 95% confidence interval, 1.55-2.47; P < 0.01).
Conclusion: Triple therapies containing a single dose of proton pump inhibitor are less effective than those containing a standard double dose of proton pump inhibitor.