What can I expect in the long term?
For many people infected with H. pylori, their infections never cause any difficulties. If you’re experiencing symptoms and receive treatment, your long-term outlook is generally positive. At least four weeks after finishing your treatment, your doctor will check to make sure it worked. Depending on your age and other medical issues, your doctor may use a urea or stool test to check whether your treatment worked.
If you develop diseases associated with an H. pylori infection, your outlook will depend on the disease, how soon it’s diagnosed, and how it’s treated. You may need to take more than one round of treatment to kill the H. pylori bacteria.
If the infection is still present after one round of treatment, a peptic ulcer could return or, more rarely, stomach cancer could develop. Very few people infected with H. pylori will develop stomach cancer. However, if you have a family history of stomach cancer, you should get testing and treatment for H. pylori infection.