Most urea breath tests now use tagged carbon rather than radioactive carbon. If you are pregnant, the radioactive
urea breath test for H. pylori
is not usually done, because
the radiation could harm your child.
The stool antigen test
is the least expensive of the four tests for Helicobacter pylori, but it may not be as accurate as the
other tests. The stomach biopsy is very accurate, but it is the most expensive
and most risky of the four tests.
A negative stool antigen test
does not always mean that an H. pylori infection is not
Although many people are infected with H. pylori bacteria, only a few of them will develop peptic ulcer disease.
For this reason, other factors (such as a person's symptoms) should be
considered when interpreting the results of an H. pylori
Blood tests for H. pylori may be
positive for several years after the infection, so the urea breath test, the stool antigen test,
or a biopsy may be used to find out if treatment has been
Having an infection with H. pylori
increases your chances of having cancer of the stomach. But the risk is very
For some people who have taken medicine to treat a Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori)
infection, a follow-up test may be needed to make sure the infection is cured.
The American College of Gastroenterology recommends a follow-up test to check
for H. pylori infection whenever:1