Noninvasive Helicobacter pylori Diagnostic Methods in Indonesia

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Although the prevalence of Helicobacter pylori infection in Indonesia is lower than that in other countries, H. pylori is still an essential pathogen associated with severe gastric mucosal damage and dyspeptic symptoms. Invasive diagnostic methods are not ideal due to the lack of endoscopic centers and high costs without full coverage by social insurance. Among the noninvasive methods, the urea breath test is widely available in Indonesia and has been suggested as the primary option to ensure the successful eradication of H. pylori. There has been no local validation for the urea breath test utilizing 13C or 14C. The stool antigen test is inexpensive and suitable for use in active infections before and after eradication; however, customs and habits are obstacles to delivering fresh stool on time. Only polyclonal antibodies and qualitative stool antigen test kits with low sensitivity are available. Serology is a widely validated method and has good accuracy, but it cannot distinguish between active and inactive infections. According to our observations, serology is the main choice of experts and patients, as it is simple, inexpensive and widely known. The urine test is an alternative for reducing costs and endoscopic workload, with high accuracy but low sensitivity. Further studies are necessary to prove the validity of the urine test to be used throughout Indonesia, especially in areas with a low prevalence of H. pylori infection. In conclusion, the validated urea breath test and the stool antigen test are considered noninvasive practical approaches for the detection of H. pylori infection in Indonesia, with serological and urine tests as alternatives.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)553-559
Number of pages7
JournalGut and Liver
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2020


  • Helicobacter pylori
  • Noninvasive
  • Serology
  • Stool antigen test
  • Urea breath test


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