HealthDay News — Helicobacter pylori treatment, vitamin supplementation, and garlic supplementation are associated with a reduced risk for gastric cancer mortality, according to a study published online Sept. 11 in The BMJ.

Wen-Qing Li, from Peking University Cancer Hospital and Institute in Beijing, and colleagues randomly assigned 2,258 residents of a high-risk region for gastric cancer who were seropositive for antibodies to H. pylori to H. pylori treatment (amoxicillin and omeprazole for two weeks), vitamin supplementation, garlic supplementation (both 7.3 years), or placebos; 1,107 H. pylori-seronegative participants were randomly assigned to either vitamin supplementation, garlic supplementation, or placebos.

The researchers identified 151 incident cases of gastric cancer and 94 deaths from gastric cancer during 1995 to 2017. Twenty-two years after the intervention, the protective effect of H. pylori treatment on gastric cancer incidence persisted (odds ratio, 0.48; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.32 to 0.71). A significant decrease in incidence was noted with vitamin supplementation (odds ratio, 0.64; 95 percent CI, 0.46 to 0.91) but not with garlic supplementation (odds ratio, 0.81; 95 percent CI, 0.57 to 1.13). Reductions in gastric cancer mortality were seen for all three interventions (fully adjusted hazard ratios, 0.62 [95 percent CI, 0.39 to 0.99], 0.48 [95 percent CI, 0.31 to 0.75], and 0.66 [95 percent CI, 0.43 to 1.00] for H. pylori treatment, vitamin supplementation, and garlic supplementation, respectively).

“These findings offer potential opportunities for gastric cancer prevention, but further large scale intervention trials are required to confirm the favorable effects of vitamin and garlic supplementation and to identify any possible risks of H. pylori treatment, and vitamin and garlic supplementation,” the authors write.

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