Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a type of bacteria that causes infection in the stomach. It is found in about two-thirds of the world's population. It may be spread by unclean food and water, but researchers aren't sure. It causes Peptic ulcers and can also cause stomach cancer.
If you have symptoms of a peptic ulcer, your doctor will test your blood, breath or stool to see if it contains H. pylori. The best treatment is a combination of antibiotics and acid-reducing medicines. You will need to be tested after treatment to make sure the infection is gone.
To help prevent an H. pylori infection, you should
- Wash your hands after using the bathroom and before eating
- Eat properly prepared food
- Drink water from a clean, safe source
NIH: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
- Helicobacter pylori (Nemours Foundation)
- Gastritis (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
- Gut Feelings About Gastritis: When Your Stomach's Sick (National Institutes of Health)
- Definition and Facts for Peptic Ulcers (Stomach Ulcers) (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
- Helicobacter pylori and Cancer (National Cancer Institute) Also in Spanish
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Helicobacter Infections (National Institutes of Health)