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Gastric juice is a digestive fluid formed in the stomach and is composed of hydrochloric acid (HCl), potassium chloride (KCl) and sodium chloride (NaCl). Gastric juice analysis is performed by measuring and assessing the contents of a fasting patient’s stomach for acidity, appearance and volume; results from this test may help evaluate suspected peptic ulcer, severe gastritis, Zollinger-Ellison (Z-E) syndrome, H pylori and gastric cancer. However, X-rays and other studies are recommended for definitive diagnosis. Gastric analysis requires very complex procedures, especially the insertion of a nasogastric tube to extract gastric contents, which has reduced its adoption rate in modern medicine. Gastric fluid is evaluated macroscopically for general physical and chemical characteristics such as color, presence of mucus or blood, and pH; gastric fluid is also evaluated microscopically for the presence of organisms and abnormal cells. The normal appearance of gastric fluid is a translucent, pale gray, slightly viscous fluid containing some mucus but not usually blood. pH is usually less than 2 and not greater than 6. To fully harness the potentials of gastric juice in clinical practice, the development of a simpler method of extracting gastric juice sample for diagnostic use will be welcomed; while this is unrealistic for the moment, further and advance training of clinicians and laboratory scientists on the extraction of gastric juice is pertinent.
Gastric juice has been described as ‘‘the stone that the builders rejected’’ since it is usually thrown away during upper Gastrointestinal tract endoscopy (Tucci, Bisceglia, Rugge, Tucci, Marchegiani and Papadopoli, 2007). However, it could provide valuable information, especially about Helicobacter pylori infection and atrophic gastritis of the oxyntic mucosa (AGOM), which cannot be detected by simple endoscopic examination which are pertinent in the identification detection of gastric cancer, however, must be complemented by an urease test and histology in all patients, with both widespread and specific gastric biopsy sampling (Dursun, Yilmaz and Yukselen, 2004). Since this is not routine practice, in some patients with normal/mild endoscopic findings, endoscopists usually take only a few antral samples or do not perform biopsies. Consequently, many cases of H pylori infection and, even more markedly, of AGOM can escape detection (Tucci et al., 2007). Recent clinical trials have demonstrated the efficiency of gastric juice in the detection of Helicobacter pylori infection and atrophic gastritis of the oxyntic mucosa (AGOM) (Tucci et al., 2007); also, a more recent study has demonstrated the efficiency of gastric juice analysis in cancer detection (Kayamba, Zyambo and Kelly, 2018) Also, gsatric juice analysis is done to look for blood in the upper gastrointestinal tract, gastric fluid also can be cultured to test for tuberculosis if an adequate sputum sample cannot be obtained for culture (Brittanica, 2016). Thus, gastric is a useful diagnostic sample. Presented in this papers are facts to buttress this point.