Hong Kong scientists have recently found that there is a strong link between chronic H. pylori infection and development of stomach cancer, and treatment of the infection can prevent stomach cancer.
The study has been published on the latest issue of the American Medical Association journal.
The leading scientists of the research, Shiu-kum Lam and Benjamin Chun-yu Wong from the Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Thursday made an introduction to the study at a press conference.
The study was conducted among 1,630 carriers of H. pylori infection from east China's Fujian Province. The carriers were divided into two groups: 817 carriers who received treatment of H.pylori and 813 carriers who received placebo.
Over a period of seven and half years, there were 18 new cases of stomach cancer developed in the 1,630, with seven in those subjects receiving H. pylori treatment and 11 in those subjects who did not, which represents a 37 percent relative decrease in cancer incidence.
The study concluded that treatment of H. pylori infection is related to a reduced chance of developing stomach cancer. It indicates that treatment is more beneficial in subjects with healthy stomach. In addition, the study is applicable to high risk area like China for the prevention of stomach cancer.
Stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer, is a malignant tumor in any part of the stomach. Globally, stomach cancer is the fourth most common cancer and the second leading cause of cancer deaths, according to the World Health Organization.
(Xinhua News Agency January 15, 2004)