Helicobacter Pylori Eradication Useful in Remission of Chronic Urticaria, Research Shows

   Helicobacter pylori (HP) has been increasingly associated with chronic idiopathic urticaria (CIU). While several studies have examined the role of HP eradication in CIU therapy, data supporting the approach are limited.

   At the annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology in New Orleans, researchers from the University of Medicine and Dentistry in Newark, NJ, provided such evidence.

   They described having conducted a meta-analysis searching Medline, Pubmed, and Cochrane databases using the terms "Helicobacter pylori" and "urticaria." Included in the analysis were prospective trials in which participants had CIU >6 weeks (with exclusion of underlying etiologies) and HP infection (confirmed by urea breath test or biopsy).

   Initial database search identified 47 studies dated from February 1996 to February 2009. Twenty-eight studies met inclusion criteria; 11 were excluded due to inability to extract appropriate data. Overall, CIU remission rates (RR) were significantly found to be 110/324 (34%) following HP eradication vs 10/69 (14%) with failed eradication (odds ratio [OR] 2.31). Similarly, RR with HP eradication vs untreated infection was 43% vs 15% (OR 3.89). Finally, RR with HP eradication vs no HP infection was 45% vs 19% (OR 2.98).

   According to the researchers, as eradication of HP increases the likelihood of CIU remission, HP screening and treatment should be considered even in the absence of gastric symptoms.