Diagnosis and treatment of Helicobacter Pylori in adults with an intellectual disability

Harper, L., Boulter, P., Ambridge, A., Griffin, P. and Ooms, A. (2019) Diagnosis and treatment of Helicobacter Pylori in adults with an intellectual disability. In: World Congress of the International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities; 06 - 09 Aug 2019, Glasgow, U.K.. (Unpublished)


Introduction: High prevalences rates of Helicobacter Pylori in people with intellectual disabilitities have been reported in the literature. However barriers to assessment and treatment of H. pylori in this population group are numerate including lack of awareness, difficulties with identifying signs and symptoms, lack of national guidance around screening and re-testing following treatment, as well as difficulties with gaining or completion of screening and first line treatments. Methods: Focus groups with clinical staff working with individuals who have an intellectual disability in the National Health Service and the independent sector; explored the experiences, knowledge and beliefs regarding the identification, treatment and preventing the spread of H. Pylori. Results: Barriers to testing, treatment and re-testing were evident in the discourse of staff. Staff expressed a lack of appropriate guidance regarding when to test, knowledge of H. pylori and potential signs and symptoms which may be divergent in presentation than that found in literature regarding the general population. Differences in presentation may be a result of communication barriers, diagnostic over-shadowing or medications currently prescribed masking symptomology. Implications: Increased awareness and testing of H. pylori to improve gastric health of people with an intellectual disability and the staff teams that support them.

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