Vitamins C and E can act as potent antioxidants to reduce the damage caused by reactive oxygen species in gastric mucosa. Whether vitamin supplements for Helicobacter pylori eradication regimen could improve the rate of eradication remains uncertain. Therefore, we performed a meta-analysis to evaluate the efficacy of vitamins C and E supplementation for the eradication of H. pylori. Searches were conducted in the databases PubMed, EMBASE and Cochrane Library. Randomised controlled trials (RCT) that fulfilled the inclusion criteria and addressed the clinical questions of this analysis were further assessed. Of the six RCT included, five had a low methodological quality. Of the six RCT, three compared the efficacy of the eradication regimen v. eradication regimen plus vitamins C and E. The result of the meta-analysis showed a non-significant difference in the eradication rate of H. pylori between the two groups (risk ratio (RR) 0·93, P = 0·76). Another three RCT compared the eradication regimen v. eradication regimen plus vitamin C only, and there too there was no significant difference in the eradication rate (RR 0·83, P = 0·32). In conclusion, vitamins C and/or E supplements to the H. pylori eradication regimen could not improve the eradication rate. However, currently available data do not draw a definitive conclusion about the effectiveness of antioxidant vitamins on H. pylori eradication, owing to the small sample size and low-to-moderate methodological quality.
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