Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test

By Medically reviewed by hellodoktor

Definition

What is Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test?

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) are bacteria that can invade your gut. H. pylori infection is one of the major causes of peptic ulcer disease. This happens when inflammation caused by the bacteria affects the mucus coating of your stomach or duodenum, the first section of your small intestine. This leads to sores on this lining and is called peptic ulcer disease.

This test can help your healthcare provider find out whether your peptic ulcers are caused by H. pylori. If antibodies are present, it may mean that they are there to fight H. pylori bacteria. Although H. pylori bacteria are a leading cause of peptic ulcers, these ulcers may also develop from taking too many nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen.

Why is Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test performed?

You may need this test if your healthcare provider suspects that you have peptic ulcer disease. Signs and symptoms include:

  • Burning sensation in your belly
  • Tenderness in your belly
  • Gnawing pain in your belly
  • Intestinal bleeding

Precaution/Warnings

What should I know before receiving Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test?

Having a blood test with a needle carries some risks. These include bleeding, infection, bruising, and feeling lightheaded. When the needle pricks your arm or hand, you may feel a slight sting or pain. Afterward, the site may be sore.

Past infection with H. pylori can affect your results, giving you a false-positive.

Process

How to prepare for Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test?

You don’t need to prepare for this test. Be sure your healthcare provider knows about all medicines, herbs, vitamins, and supplements you are taking. This includes medicines that don’t need a prescription and any illicit drugs you may use.

What happens during Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test?

The health professional taking a sample of your blood will:

  • Wrap an elastic band around your upper arm to stop the flow of blood. This makes the veins below the band larger so it is easier to put a needle into the vein.
  • Clean the needle site with alcohol.
  • Put the needle into the vein. More than one needle stick may be needed.
  • Attach a tube to the needle to fill it with blood.
  • Remove the band from your arm when enough blood is collected.
  • Put a gauze pad or cotton ball over the needle site as the needle is removed.
  • Put pressure on the site and then put on a bandage.

What happens after Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test?

This test doesn’t require any special aftercare. You may resume your daily activities unless instructed otherwise by your doctor.

If you have any questions about the Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test, please consult with your doctor to better understand your instructions.

Explanation of results

What do my results mean?

A positive blood test for H. pylori antibody may indicate a current or previous infection. A different test for H. pylori such as the breath test may need to be done as follow up to determine whether the infection is a current one.

A negative test result means that it is unlikely that the individual has an H. pylori infection and their signs and symptoms may be due to another cause. However, if symptoms persist, additional testing may be done, including the more invasive tissue biopsy, to more conclusively rule out infection.

Depending on the laboratory and hospital, the normal range for Helicobacter Pylori Antibody Test may vary. Please discuss with your doctor any questions you may have about your test results.

 

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Review Date: November 5, 2018 | Last Modified: September 12, 2019

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