By Dr Sandeep Raj Kunwar
Consultant Gastroenterologist & HOD, Digestive Disease Center, Norvic International Hospital
"THE ULCER BUG"
Among many others, Helicobacter pylori is a bug (Gram –ve bacteria) responsible for most of the individuals with Gastritis, Gastric Ulcers and Duodenal (Small Intestine) Ulcers in Nepal.
The International agency for research on cancer (IARC), a subordinate organisation of the World Health Organization(WHO) has labeled it as Class 1 carcinogen (definitive Cancer causing bacteria).
It is found in half the population of the world. World Gastroenterology Organization (WGO) global guidelines published that among the adults of SAARC nations, like India and Bangladesh, prevalence of this bug is upto 88 % and >90 % respectively.
Globally, this bug appears to be associated with different strains (types) with different virulence (activity) resulting interplay and with host factors and environmental factors that leads to subsequent differences in the expression of disease. Age, ethnicity, socioeconomic status influences the probability of disease.
Transmission is largely oral –oral and feco oral routes. A lack of proper sanitation, of safe drinking water and basic hygiene, poor diet and overcrowding play a role in transmission to one another.
For easy diagnosis and confirmation on eradication of the bug and for the first time in Nepal, Norvic International Hospital Digestive Disease Center recently acquired a unique breath test, the 13 C urea breath test from Richen –Europe group, which is very easy to perform, accurate and non radioactive. Previously, and still in many hospitals in the capital, inaccurate, radioactive capsules that are harmful to pregnant women and children are used.
For more information, please click here