High Prevalence of Helicobacter pylori Resistance to Clarithromycin: a Hospital-Based Cross-Sectional Study in Nakhon Ratchasima Province, Northeast of Thailand


Background: Helicobacter pylori is a cause of chronic gastritis, peptic ulcer disease, and gastric malignancy, infection being a serious health problem in Thailand. Recently, clarithromycin resistant H. pylori strains represent the main cause of treatment failure. Therefore this study aimed to determine the prevalence and pattern of H. pylori resistance to clarithromycin in Suranaree University of Technology Hospital, Suranree University of Technology, Nakhon Ratchasima, Northeastern Thailand, Nakhon Ratchasima province, northeast of Thailand. Materials and
Methods: This hospital-based cross-sectional study was carried out between June 2014 and February 2015 with 300 infected patients interviewed and from whom gastric mucosa specimens were collected and proven positive by histology. The gastric mucosa specimens were tested for H. pylori and clarithromycin resistance by 23S ribosomal RNA point mutations analysis using real-time polymerase chain reactions. Correlation of eradication rates with patterns of mutation were analyzed by chi-square test.
Results: Of 300 infected patients, the majority were aged between 47-61 years (31.6%), female (52.3%), with monthly income between 10,000-15,000 Baht (57%), and had a history of alcohol drinking (59.3%). Patient symptoms were abdominal pain (48.6%), followed by iron deficiency anemia (35.3%). Papaya salad consumption (40.3%) was a possible risk factor for H. pylori infection. The prevalence of H. pylori strains resistant to clarithromycin was 76.2%. Among clarithromycin-resistant strains tested, all were due to the A2144G point mutation in the 23S rRNA gene. Among mutations group, wild type genotype, mutant strain mixed wild type and mutant genotype were 23.8%, 35.7% and 40.5% respectively. With the clarithromycin-based triple therapy regimen, the efficacy decreased by 70% for H. pylori eradication (P<0.01).
Conclusions: Recent results indicate a high rate of H. pylori resistance to clarithromycin. Mixed of wild type and mutant genotype is the most common mutant genotype in Nakhon Ratchasima province, therefore the use of clarithromycin-based triple therapy an not advisable as an empiric first-line regimen for H. pylori eradication in northeast region of Thailand.