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Long term outcome of patients with gastric marginal zone B cell lymphoma of mucosa associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) following exclusive Helicobacter pylori eradication therapy: experience from a large prospective series
  1. W Fischbach1,
  2. M-E Goebeler-Kolve2,
  3. B Dragosics3,
  4. A Greiner5,
  5. M Stolte4
  1. 1Department of Internal Medicine, Klinikum Aschaffenburg, Aschaffenburg, Germany
  2. 2Medizinische Poliklinik, University of Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany
  3. 3Gesundheitszentrum Süd, Vienna, Austria
  4. 4Institute of Pathology, Klinikum Bayreuth, Bayreuth, Germany
  5. 5Institute of Pathology, University of Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany
  1. Correspondence to:
    Professor W Fischbach
    Medizinische Klinik II, Klinikum Aschaffenburg, Am Hasenkopf, D-63739 Aschaffenburg, Germany;


Background:Helicobacter pylori plays a decisive role in the pathogenesis of gastric marginal zone B cell lymphoma of mucosa associated lymphoid tissue (MALT), and eradication therapy has become a widely accepted initial treatment of stage I disease.

Objective: To determine the long term outcome of patients undergoing exclusive H pylori eradication therapy.

Design: A prospective series of patients with newly diagnosed marginal zone B cell lymphoma of MALT.

Setting: Multicentre study in Germany and Austria.

Patients: Ninety five patients; 90 of these (five lost to follow up) with a mean age of 54.3 (27–85) years were followed up for at least 12 months.

Intervention: Complete staging work up revealing stage I disease and H pylori infection. Patients received triple therapy (OMC: omeprazole 20 mg twice daily, metronidazole 400 mg twice daily, and clarithromycin 250 mg twice daily; or OAC: omeprazole 20 mg twice daily, amoxycillin 1000 mg twice daily, and clarithromycin 500 twice daily) for one week.

Results: Median follow up was 44.6 (12–89) months. H pylori was successfully eradicated in 88 patients (98%); in two patients eradication therapy failed. Long term outcome was characterised by complete regression of lymphoma in 56 patients (62%), minimal residual disease in 17 patients (18%), partial remission in 11 patients (12%), no change in four patients (4%), and progressive disease in two patients (2%). Four patients with complete remission relapsed after 6, 8, 8, and 15 months, one revealing reinfection by H pylori. Regression rate was higher in stage I1 disease compared with stage I2, as diagnosed by endoscopic ultrasound.

Conclusion: The majority of patients with low grade gastric MALT lymphoma treated by exclusive H pylori eradication have a favourable long term outcome, offering a real chance of cure.

  • MALT lymphoma
  • Helicobacter pylori
  • eradication therapy
  • MALT, mucosa associated lymphoid tissue
  • OMC, omeprazole, metronidazole, and clarithromycin
  • OAC, omeprazole, amoxycillin, and clarithromycin
  • EUS, endoscopic ultrasound

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  • Presented and published as an abstract at the Digestive Disease Week, Atlanta, May 2001.