Relationship between Helicobacter pylori Infection and Serum Ferritin Level in Primary School Children in Tehran-Iran
Iron deficiency can cause cognitive and functional learning disorders in children. Some studies have reported a relationship between low serum ferritin levels in patients with anemia and Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection. Therefore, we aimed to determine the relationship between these two common diseases. This descriptive analytical cross-sectional study was performed to assess serum ferritin levels and H. pylori antibody titers (IgG) among 6-12 year old healthy primary school children in Tehran during the academic year 2005-2006. Specimen collection was done by cluster and randomization methods (multistage sampling). Personal information and laboratory results were compiled in questionnaires and data were analyzed by descriptive and analytical statistics via SPSS software. 165 primary school children (43% boys, 57% girls) with mean age 9.2 ± 1.5 years were enrolled in the study. H. pylori IgG antibody titer was positive in 26% of cases with mean values of 0.79 ± 0.42 units in boys and 0.75 ± 0.39 units in girls, which showed a significant statistical difference (P=0.004). H. pylori infection was more common among children of large families or those with low economic status (P=0.002). 29% of children had low serum ferritin levels. Out of the children with low serum ferritin levels, 71% and 28% had negative and positive anti H. pylori antibody titers (IgG levels), respectively. Also, 296 children (25%) with normal ferritin levels had H. pylori infection. We did not find a significant relationship between H. pylori infection and low serum ferritin levels or iron deficiency anemia.
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