Halitosis and Helicobacter pylori. A possible link?

J Clin Gastroenterol. 1992 Oct;15(3):236-7. doi: 10.1097/00004836-199210000-00013.


The exact pathophysiological mechanism of halitosis is not clear, and in many patients the etiology is an enigma. We followed three couples in which one member or both had halitosis. All the subjects had evidence of Helicobacter pylori infection. All received a treatment course of colloidal bismuth subcitrate four times a day and 250 mg metronidazole three times a day. There was impressive improvement in their symptoms, the halitosis disappearing along with eradication of the organism. We call the attention of physicians to the possible connection between halitosis, H. pylori infection, and familial occurrence. Further studies to confirm this surprising association are in order.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Antacids / therapeutic use
  • Family Health
  • Female
  • Halitosis / microbiology*
  • Helicobacter Infections / complications*
  • Helicobacter Infections / drug therapy
  • Helicobacter pylori*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metronidazole / therapeutic use
  • Organometallic Compounds / therapeutic use


  • Antacids
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Metronidazole
  • bismuth tripotassium dicitrate