Dyspepsia in healthy blood donors. Pattern of symptoms and association with Helicobacter pylori

Dig Dis Sci. 1994 May;39(5):1090-8. doi: 10.1007/BF02087563.


Whether Helicobacter pylori is causally linked to dyspepsia remains controversial. The aims of this study were to assess in healthy blood donors the prevalence of dyspepsia and dyspepsia subgroups, determine if H. pylori is associated with different categories of dyspeptic symptoms, and evaluate the association between dyspepsia and nicotine, alcohol, and analgesic use. Consecutive blood donors (N = 180) who had no clinical evidence of organic disease were included. Abdominal symptoms were measured by means of a standardized questionnaire that has been previously validated. Subjects with dyspepsia (defined as pain localized to the upper abdomen) were further subdivided into those with ulcer-like, dysmotility-like, reflux-like, or nonspecific dyspepsia. A total of 65 subjects reported abdominal pain or discomfort during the prior 12 months [36.1%, 95% confidence interval (CI) 29.1-43.1]; 44 subjects (24.4%, 95% CI 18.2-30.7) had dyspepsia. Dysmotility-like, reflux-like, and ulcer-like symptoms were reported by 19.4% (95% CI 13.7-25.2), 17.2% (95% CI 11.7-22.7), and 16.7% (95% CI 11.2-22.1) of subjects with dyspepsia, respectively. Fifty-seven subjects (31.7%, 95% CI 24.9-38.5) were H. pylori positive; 26% of subjects with H. pylori and 24% without H. pylori had dyspepsia (P > 0.50). The seroprevalence of H. pylori was also similar among the different categories of dyspepsia. We conclude that infection with H. pylori is not associated with abdominal complaints in otherwise healthy subjects.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Alcohol Drinking / adverse effects
  • Analgesics / adverse effects
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / analysis
  • Aspirin / adverse effects
  • Blood Donors*
  • Colonic Diseases, Functional / microbiology
  • Dyspepsia / etiology
  • Dyspepsia / microbiology*
  • Female
  • Helicobacter Infections / complications*
  • Helicobacter Infections / diagnosis
  • Helicobacter pylori* / immunology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking / adverse effects


  • Analgesics
  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Aspirin