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Pernicious anemia: What are the actual diagnosis criteria?

Keywords: Pernicious anemia , Intrinsic factor , Achlorhydria , Schilling test , Helicobacter pylori

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A gastric intrinsic factor output under 200 U/h after pentagastrin stimulation (N > 2000 U/h) is specific for pernicious anemia. The other findings are either variable or non specific. Serum intrinsic factor antibodies, considered as specific in general practice, are present only in half of the patients with pernicious anemia. In their absence, since the disappearance of the Schilling tests, the gastric tubage currently used for the study of gastric acid secretion, is obligatory for the simultaneous study of intrinsic factor output. This study is important to eliminate another disease much more frequent than pernicious anemia, the protein bound to cobalamin malabsorption was observed in achlorhydric simple atrophic gastritis in the presence of intrinsic factor secretion.


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