Experience with Rifabutin-Containing Therapy in 500 Patients from the European Registry on Helicobacter pylori Management (Hp-EuReg)

J Clin Med. 2022 Mar 16;11(6):1658. doi: 10.3390/jcm11061658.


Background: First-line Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) treatments have been relatively well evaluated; however, it remains necessary to identify the most effective rescue treatments. Our aim was to assess the effectiveness and safety of H. pylori regimens containing rifabutin.

Methods: International multicentre prospective non-interventional European Registry on H. pylori Management (Hp-EuReg). Patients treated with rifabutin were registered in AEG-REDCap e-CRF from 2013 to 2021. Modified intention-to-treat and per-protocol analyses were performed. Data were subject to quality control.

Results: Overall, 500 patients included in the Hp-EuReg were treated with rifabutin (mean age 52 years, 72% female, 63% with dyspepsia, 4% with peptic ulcer). Culture was performed in 63% of cases: dual resistance (to both clarithromycin and metronidazole) was reported in 46% of the cases, and triple resistance (to clarithromycin, metronidazole, and levofloxacin) in 39%. In 87% of cases rifabutin was utilised as part of a triple therapy together with amoxicillin and a proton-pump-inhibitor, and in an additional 6% of the patients, bismuth was added to this triple regimen. Rifabutin was mainly used in second-line (32%), third-line (25%), and fourth-line (27%) regimens, achieving overall 78%, 80% and 66% effectiveness by modified intention-to-treat, respectively. Compliance with treatment was 89%. At least one adverse event was registered in 26% of the patients (most frequently nausea), and one serious adverse event (0.2%) was reported in one patient with leukopenia and thrombocytopenia with fever requiring hospitalisation.

Conclusion: Rifabutin-containing therapy represents an effective and safe strategy after one or even several failures of H. pylori eradication treatment.

Keywords: H. pylori; Helicobacter pylori; Hp-EuReg; bismuth; culture; eradication failure; rescue; rifabutin; treatment.