The epithelial differences between the normal stomach (six subjects) and 47 patients with gastric ulcers were compared. The concentrations of intraepithelial lymphocytes and polymorphonuclear leucocytes in lesser curve and prepyloric gastirc ulcers were compared, the effect of treatment with carbenoxolone sodium was studied. There is a statistically significant reduction in the total number of intraepithelial polymorphonuclear leucocytes before and after successful treatment with carbenoxolone sodium. There is also a statistically significant decrease in the quantity of intraepithelial lymphocytes in those patients with lesser curve gastric ulcers successfully treated with carbenoxolone sodium, whereas there is a significant increase in those patients with prepyloric gastric ulcers successfully treated and those patients in whom treatment failed. The value of counts of migrating white blood cells as a method of objectively assessing the effect of healing drugs upon the gastric mucosa is discussed. Pseudomonas aeruginosa was found in many specimens obtained, and evidence is presented that this was not a contaminant. Carbenoxolone appeared to increase the amount of mucus but had little effect upon the number of bacteria found. The possible contribution of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to gastric ulceration is discussed.
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