Epidemiologic characteristics of Helicobacter pylori infection in southeast Hungary

World J Gastroenterol. 2019 Nov 14;25(42):6365-6372. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v25.i42.6365.


Background: Epidemiologic studies have revealed a decrease in the prevalence of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection in Western Europe.

Aim: To obtain data regarding the prevalence of H. pylori in Csongrád and Békés Counties in Hungary, evaluate the differences in its prevalence between urban and rural areas, and establish factors associated with positive seroprevalence.

Methods: One-thousand and one healthy blood donors [male/female: 501/500, mean age: 40 (19-65) years] were enrolled in this study. Subjects were tested for H. pylori IgG antibody positivity via enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Subgroup analysis by age, gender, smoking habits, alcohol consumption, and urban vs non-urban residence was also performed.

Results: The overall seropositivity of H. pylori was 32%. It was higher in males (34.93% vs 29.2%, P = 0.0521) and in rural areas (36.2% vs 27.94%, P = 0.0051). Agricultural/industrial workers were more likely to be positive for infection than office workers (38.35% vs 30.11%, P = 0.0095) and rural subjects in Békés County than those in Csongrád County (43.36% vs 33.33%, P = 0.0015).

Conclusion: Although the prevalence of H. pylori infection decreased in recent decades in Southeast Hungary, it remains high in middle-aged rural populations. Generally accepted risk factors for H. pylori positivity appeared to be valid for the studied population.

Keywords: Helicobacter pylori; Central Europe; Differences in urban and rural population; Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; Epidemiology; Healthy volunteers; Prevalence.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / blood
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Female
  • Helicobacter Infections / blood
  • Helicobacter Infections / epidemiology*
  • Helicobacter pylori
  • Humans
  • Hungary / epidemiology
  • Immunoglobulin G / blood
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Rural Population
  • Seroepidemiologic Studies
  • Urban Population
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Immunoglobulin G