Levofloxacin-based triple therapy in first-line treatment for Helicobacter pylori eradication

Enrico C Nista, Marcello Candelli, Maria A Zocco, Filippo Cremonini, Veronica Ojetti, Rosalba Finizio, Cristiano Spada, Giovanni Cammarota, Giovanni Gasbarrini, Antonio Gasbarrini
American Journal of Gastroenterology 2006, 101 (9): 1985-90

BACKGROUND: The standard first-line therapies for Helicobacter pylori eradication are based on clarithromycin and amoxicillin or metronidazole. Recent studies suggested levofloxacin as an alternative option for both first-and second-line H. pylori eradication treatment.

AIMS: To compare efficacy and tolerability of two different 7-day standard triple therapies versus 7-day levofloxacin-based triple therapy in first-line treatment for H. pylori infection.

METHODS: Three hundred consecutive H. pylori positive patients were randomized to receive: clarithromycin, amoxicillin, esomeprazole (Group A: N = 100); clarithromycin, metronidazole, esomeprazole (Group B: N = 100); or clarithromycin, levofloxacin, esomeprazole (Group C: N = 100). H. pylori status was rechecked by (13)C urea breath test 6 wk after the end of therapy.

RESULTS: Sixteen out of 300 patients discontinued treatment because of the occurrence of side effects (Group A, 5; Group B, 7; Group C, 4). The eradication rates in intention to treat (ITT) and per protocol (PP) analyses were: Group A, 75% and 79%; Group B, 72% and 77.4%; and Group C, 87% and 90.6%. The eradication rate achieved with levofloxacin-based triple therapy was significantly higher than that with standard therapies in either ITT (87%vs 75%, p <0.05; 87%vs 72%, p <0.01;) or PP analysis (90.6%vs 79%, p <0.05; 90.6 vs 77.4, p <0.05). No difference was found between standard triple therapies. The incidence of side effects was similar among groups.

CONCLUSIONS: A 7-day levofloxacin-based triple therapy can achieve higher H. pylori eradication rates than standard regimens. These data suggest levofloxacin-based regimens can be the most effective in first-line anti-H. pylori therapy, at least in the Italian population.

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