Previously positive, now negative?

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wsmith5813
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Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:26 pm

Previously positive, now negative?

Post by wsmith5813 » Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:52 pm

Good morning,

About 3 years ago I began having problems with bloating, shooting pain in my abdomen, and mild muscle spasms in my sides and sternum. A blood test was conducted, which was positive for H pylori, and I went through first and second line treatments. My symptoms gradually resolved and a follow up stool test came back negative.

Almost 2 years after my symptoms resolved, I started having similar abdominal problems again. Belching, mild abdominal spasms, bloating, chest pain when swallowing, and loose stools. Symptoms have been present for almost 5 weeks now. I was originally prescribed Omeprazole and Sucralfate, which I took for 1 week. Because of my symptoms and history, my Dr decided to test for H pylori and schedule an EGD. I discontinued medications. 2 weeks after discontinuing the Sucralfate and omeprazole, I had a UBT taken, which came back negative. Several days after the ubt, I had an EGD.

Results of the EGD showed no ulcers, but mild chronic gastritis in my stomach. Biopsies were taken to test for h pylori (warthin-starry stain) and celiac, which both came back negative. A culture was done as well, which was negative. Current course of action is to continue the omeprazole and sucralfate and follow up in 3 weeks. The medications do help my symptoms.

My concern is that the tests are producing false negatives and the symptoms will return once I finish the medication. After having a ubt, biopsy, and culture, am I just being paranoid? Or is there a reasonable chance that all these tests are not detecting an h pylori infection? If there is a chance I have an infection, what would you recommend as my next course of action?

Your advice would be very much appreciated. Thank you for your time.
Last edited by wsmith5813 on Fri Jun 21, 2019 5:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

Presh23
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Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 3:32 pm

Re: Previously positive, now negative?

Post by Presh23 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:33 am

Hi there,

Maybe relax for now and just take your medications and when you go back for a checkup ask the doctor to perform a stool test.

Like you i also have chronic gastritis. I have it in the antrum which apparently is the most common place for hpylori to cause gastritis.

Also watch your diet. I cant have dairy as my symptoms get really bad.

Best Regards
Presh23

Helico_expert
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Re: Previously positive, now negative?

Post by Helico_expert » Fri Jun 21, 2019 7:18 am

i think you have done all the right test and a false negative is very unlikely.

From the endoscopy and pathology test, at least there is no abnormality.

So I agree that you should just continue PPI if you want to and relax. Sometimes the gastric symptoms can flare up when you are too stressful thinking about it.

wsmith5813
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:26 pm

Re: Previously positive, now negative?

Post by wsmith5813 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:08 pm

Thank you both for your insight.

I guess it just seems odd to me that I'd have an onset of symptoms after being symptom-free for so long, although my symptoms aren't as severe as they were back then. I figured I might have been reinfected from a cruise to Mexico a couple months back.

I'll stay the course and see what happens in a few weeks.

Thanks again!

wsmith5813
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:26 pm

Re: Previously positive, now negative?

Post by wsmith5813 » Tue Jul 09, 2019 9:24 pm

Helico_expert wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 7:18 am
i think you have done all the right test and a false negative is very unlikely.

From the endoscopy and pathology test, at least there is no abnormality.

So I agree that you should just continue PPI if you want to and relax. Sometimes the gastric symptoms can flare up when you are too stressful thinking about it.
I figured I'd follow up after 3 weeks on the ppi and carafate. The belching, regurgitation, and painful swallowing has subsided, which is a big relief. But about a week ago, I started having shooting pains and cramping in my left side/abdomen. Very similar to the pain I was having several years ago. It came on gradually and has been getting more intense since then.

I've heard of H pylori symptoms coming back after finishing ppi, but do they come back while still taking ppi? I'm diligent about not missing any doses and my diet is fairly clean. I guess I'm wondering if it would be worthwhile to come off the ppi at some point and test for h pylori again. Perhaps waiting longer than 2 weeks before doing another breath test? Currently awaiting a call from the Dr, but in the meantime, what are your thoughts?

Thanks in advance!

Helico_expert
Site Admin
Posts: 3295
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:20 am

Re: Previously positive, now negative?

Post by Helico_expert » Wed Jul 10, 2019 8:19 am

you don’t catch H pylori easily from eating. H pylori cannot survive outside human body.

Nevertheless, it’s a good idea to get a follow up test, if that can give you a peace of mind.

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