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Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) Infection: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/10/2019

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infects the cells of the stomach lining, causing production of a toxin and subsequent inflammation that can lead to a variety of symptoms and signs. The clinical picture is very variable in that some people who are infected do not have any symptoms. Others may have mild symptoms, while others develop severe symptoms and ulcers.

Mild symptoms of H. pylori infection are

  • bloating,
  • frequent burping or belching,
  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • abdominal pain.

In more severe cases, those affected by H. pylori may experience

  • vomiting blood,
  • dark stool (from bleeding into the gastrointestinal tract),
  • anemia (from red blood cell loss due to bleeding),
  • heartburn,
  • bad breath,
  • worsening abdominal pain.

Causes of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection

H. pylori is a type of bacteria that can invade the lining of the stomach, causing an infection. The inflammation results from production of a toxin known as vacuolating cytotoxin A (Vac-A). The inflammation can lead to ulcer formation.

Other helicobacter pylori (h. pylori) symptoms and signs

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/10/2019


Pancreatitis is inflammation of an organ in the abdomen called the pancreas. See Answer

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