Corpus atrophic gastritis (CAG) is associated with intestinal metaplasia (IM) and pseudopyloric metaplasia (PPM). Prospective data on corpus mucosa PPM and its link to the development of gastric cancer (GC) are lacking. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between the presence of corpus mucosa PPM at baseline and the development of GC at follow-up in patients with CAG.
A longitudinal cohort study was conducted on patients with consecutive CAG adhering to endoscopic-histological surveillance. Patients were stratified for the presence/absence of corpus PPM without concomitant corpus IM at baseline, and the occurrence of gastric neoplastic lesions at the longest available follow-up was assessed.
A total of 292 patients with CAG with a follow-up of 4.2 (3–17) years were included. At baseline, corpus PPM without corpus IM was diagnosed in 62 patients (21.2%). At the follow-up, GC was detected in 5 patients (1.7%) and gastric dysplasia (GD) in 4 patients (1.4%). In all these 9 patients with GC/GD at the follow-up, corpus IM was present at baseline and follow-up. Age <50 years (odds ratio [OR] 2.5), absence of pernicious anemia (OR 4.3), and absence of severe corpus atrophy (OR 2.3) were associated with corpus PPM without corpus IM.
At the 4.2-year follow-up, in patients with CAG characterized at baseline with corpus PPM without corpus IM, GC or GD was not observed because these lesions were consistently associated with corpus IM. Corpus PPM without corpus IM was associated with younger age, absence of pernicious anemia, and severe corpus atrophy, suggesting a lower stage of disease progression. Corpus PPM alone seems not to be associated with GC, whose development seems to require the presence of corpus IM as a necessary step.