Use of nested PCR for evaluation of Helicobacter pylori transmission by endoscopies

Abstract number: 1733_1434

Mikkelsen H., Andersen L.P.

Objective:Helicobacter pylori colonise the gastric mucosa of almost half the world population and have been recognized as the main cause of gastritis. Additionally, it is considered to play a major role in development of duodenal ulcers, gastric ulcers and gastric lymphoma as well as gastric cancer. Infection is usually acquired in childhood and it is speculated that infections occurs primarily from person to person via faecal-oral routes. However, the precise route of transmission remains undocumented and so far no reservoir for the bacteria has been identified outside the human stomach. Endoscopy is a potential source of nosocomical infection and several studies have described transmission of infectious agents via contaminated endoscopes. Different approaches have been applied in order to prevent such iatrogenic infections, and have resulted in the formulation of strict guidelines for cleaning and disinfections of endoscopes after use. At Copenhagen University Hospital, Rigshospitalet endoscopes are cleaned in endoscopic washing machines after use. The quality of cleaning and disinfections is monitored by routine inspections. During the last 5 years the measured germ number have been very low and H. pylori has not been identified in these samples.

Methods: To assess the efficacy of cleaning of endoscopes water samples were collected from both the air channel and biopsy channel of 20 endoscopes. In the latter case a brush was passed through the channel followed by cleaning of the brush in sterile water. The water samples were processed and a Helicobacter pylori-specific PCR targeting the 16S rDNA gene was conducted to determine the presence or absence of the bacteria in the water samples.

Results: Samples from all endoscopes were found to be negative with respect to the presence of H. pylori.

Conclusion: Based on the absence of H. pylori it is concluded that the present cleaning practise is sufficient to prevent iatrogenic infections in relation to endoscopes.

Session Details

Date: 31/03/2007
Time: 00:00-00:00
Session name: European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Location: ICC, Munich, Germany
Presentation type:
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