Helicobacter Pylori Antibody
Does this test have other names?
What is this test?
This test measures the levels of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) antibodies in your
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
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 do I need this test?
You may need this test if your healthcare provider suspects that you have peptic ulcer
disease. Signs and symptoms include:
What other tests might I have along with this test?
Your healthcare provider may also order other tests to look for the actual presence
of the H. pylori bacteria. These tests might include a stool sample test or an endoscopy,
in which a thin tube with a camera on the end is passed down your throat and into
your upper gastrointestinal tract. Using special instruments, your healthcare provider
can then remove a small piece of tissue to look for H. pylori.
What do my test results mean?
Test results may vary depending on your age, gender, health history, the method used
for the test, and other things. Your test results may not mean you have a problem.
Ask your healthcare provider what your test results mean for you.
Normal results are negative, meaning that no H. pylori antibodies were found and that
you don't have an infection with these bacteria.
Positive results mean that H. pylori antibodies were found. You don't necessarily
have an infection with H. pylori, however. H. pylori antibodies may linger in your
body long after the bacteria have been removed by your immune system.
How is this test done?
The test is done with a blood sample. A needle is used to draw blood from a vein in
your arm or hand.
Does this test pose any risks?
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.
What might affect my test results?
Past infection with H. pylori can affect your results, giving you a false-positive.
How do I get ready for this 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.