Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Breath Test Can Discriminate Between A Bacterial Overgrowth And IBS

Date:
December 20, 2007
Source:
World Journal of Gastroenterology
Summary:
An overgrowth of intestinal bacteria is often present in adult population of Westernized countries, because of poor daily intake of fibres and faecal stasis; such an overgrowth contributes to a chronic inflammation on intestinal mucosa and development of symptoms that look like those of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBS). However, a modern test can now discriminate between a bacterial overgrowth and an IBS and, therefore, addresses the patients towards an appropriate treatment with antibiotics.

The gastrointestinal (GI) tract is colonized by bacteria immediately after birth; Escherichia coli, Streptococci and Clostridi are the first bacteria harboured by the colon, followed by anaerobic Enterococci, Lattobacilli and Bacteroidi. These commensal bacteria inhabiting the human intestine (i.e., intestinal microflora) participate in the development and maintenance of gut sensory and motor functions, including the promotion of intestinal propulsive activity; on the other hand, intestinal motility represents one of the major control systems of gut microflora, though the sweeping of excessive bacteria from the lumen. There is emerging evidence indicating that changes in this bi-directional interplay contribute to the pathogenesis of gut diseases, such as small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).

Related Articles


Many factors affect the type and distribution of the bacteria along the GI tract, starting from the type of delivery and nursing in the first days of life, up to the food habits during the adult life: a SIBO is often present in adult population of westernized countries, because of poor daily intake of fibres and faecal stasis; such an overgrowth contributes to a chronic inflammation on intestinal mucosa and development of symptoms, such as abdominal pain, diarrhoea or stipsis.

These symptoms look like those of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBS) and, unfortunately, most of these patients with a bacterial overgrowth are inappropriately treated with topically-active non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents. In fact, these compounds have no antibacterial activity and, therefore, they do not remove the causative factors of the symptoms (bacterial overgrowth) and are likely to provoke even severe adverse events.

The "breath test" is a recently developed test, which is able to detect elevated concentrations of hydrogen in the expired air. In presence of a SIBO, dietary carbohydrates are metabolised with production of massive amounts of hydrogen that are eliminated with the breath. Thus, the "breath test" consists in administering 50-75 grams of lactulose and assaying the concentrations of hydrogen in the expired air; if these concentrations exceed 10 to 20 part per million, the subject is suspected to have a SIBO and should be appropriately treated with antibiotics.

Clinicians should be encouraged to perform a "breath test" to promptly identify a bacterial overgrowth, because the disorder has several systemic consequences ranging from malabsorption of lipids and liposoluble vitamins and loss of electrolytes, to a more severe translocation of bacteria (usually, gram-negative and aerobic bacteria, such as Escherichia, Proteus, Enterobacter and Klebsiella) from the GI tract to extraintestinal tissues; all these factors may lead to sepsis and multiorgan failure.

Today, there is an effective treatment for bacterial overgrowth, which is rapidly corrected by the use of locally acting non-absorbable antibiotics, such as rifaximin polimorph A, which reverses the process (intestinal bacterial overgrowth) and prevents the cascade of events leading from intestinal low-grade inflammation to symptom development.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by World Journal of Gastroenterology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

World Journal of Gastroenterology. "Breath Test Can Discriminate Between A Bacterial Overgrowth And IBS." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 December 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071219103059.htm>.
World Journal of Gastroenterology. (2007, December 20). Breath Test Can Discriminate Between A Bacterial Overgrowth And IBS. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071219103059.htm
World Journal of Gastroenterology. "Breath Test Can Discriminate Between A Bacterial Overgrowth And IBS." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071219103059.htm (accessed April 21, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Newsy (Apr. 20, 2015) Five years on, the possible environmental impact of the Deepwater Horizon spill includes a sustained die-off of bottlenose dolphins, among others. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

AFP (Apr. 20, 2015) On April 20, 2010, an explosion and fire on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico started the biggest oil spill in US history. BP recently reported the Gulf is recovering well, but scientists paint a different picture. Duration: 02:36 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thai Customs Seize African Elephant Tusks Worth $6 Mn

Thai Customs Seize African Elephant Tusks Worth $6 Mn

AFP (Apr. 20, 2015) Thai customs seize four tonnes of African elephant ivory worth $6 million at a Bangkok port in a container labelled as beans. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Un-Bee-Lievable: Bees on the Loose After Washington Truck Crash

Un-Bee-Lievable: Bees on the Loose After Washington Truck Crash

Reuters - US Online Video (Apr. 17, 2015) A truck carrying honey bees overturns near Lynnwood, Washington, spreading boxes of live bees across the highway. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins