What is Hydrogen Breath test? Do I need it?

What is Hydrogen Breath test? Do I need it?

Hydrogen breath checks assist to diagnose both intolerance to sugars or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).

The take a look at measures how the quantity of hydrogen current in your breath modifications after you devour a sugar answer. There’s often little or no hydrogen in your breath. Having the next stage of it often signifies an issue, both from sugar tolerance or bacterial development in your small gut.

Why it should be done?

Your physician will carry out a hydrogen breath test a look at if they think that you’ve an intolerance to a particular sugar or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).

Sugar intolerance

Sugar intolerance means you have got bother digesting a particular kind of sugar. For instance, some individuals can’t tolerate lactose, a sugar present in milk or different dairy merchandise.

Lactose is generally damaged down within the small gut by an enzyme known as lactase. People who find themselves lactose illiberal can’t make this enzyme. Because of this, the lactose strikes into their massive gut, the place it’s damaged down by micro organism as a substitute. This course of makes hydrogen, which is able to present up throughout a hydrogen breath take a look at.

It’s also possible to have the intolerance to different sugars, resembling fructose.

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth

SIBO refers to having an uncommon quantity of micro organism in your small gut. This could trigger many signs, together with bloating, diarrhea, and malabsorption.

In case you have SIBO, the bacterias in your small gut will break down the sugar answer given through the hydrogen breath take a look at. This ends in hydrogen, which a hydrogen breath take a look at will decide up.

Do I would like to arrange?

Your physician will ask you to do a number of issues to arrange on your hydrogen breath take a look at.

4 weeks earlier than your take a look atKeep away from:

  • taking antibiotics
  • taking Pepto-Bismol
  • having a process carried out that requires bowel prep, resembling a colonoscopy

One to 2 weeks earlier than your take a look atKeep away from taking:

  • antacids
  • laxatives
  • stool softeners

The day earlier than your take a look atSolely eat and drink the next:

  • plain white bread or rice
  • plain white potatoes
  • baked or broiled plain hen or fish
  • water
  • unflavored espresso or tea

Keep away from:

  • candy drinks, resembling soda
  • meals with a excessive fiber content material, resembling beans, cereal, or pasta
  • butter and margarine

You must also keep away from smoking or being round secondhand smoke. Inhaling smoke can intervene together with your take a look at outcomes.

The day of your take a look atKeep away from consuming or ingesting something, together with water, within the eight to 12 hours previous to your take a look at. Your physician will verify with you when it’s best to cease consuming and ingesting.

It’s possible you’ll proceed to take any regular prescription medicines with a small quantity of water. Simply be sure to inform your physician about any prescription medicines you are taking, particularly you probably have diabetes. It’s possible you’ll want to regulate your insulin dosage earlier than the take a look at.

The day of your take a look at, you must also keep away from:

  • smoking or inhaling secondhand smoke
  • chewing gum
  • utilizing mouthwash or breath mints
  • exercising

How is it completed?

To carry out a hydrogen breath take a look at, your physician will begin by having you gently blow right into a bag to get an preliminary breath pattern.

Subsequent, they’ll have you ever drink answer containing various kinds of sugar. You’ll then breath right into a bag each 15 to 20 minutes as your physique digests the answer. After every breath, your physician will use a syringe to empty the bag.

Whereas hydrogen breath checks are pretty easy to do, they will take two to 3 hours, so chances are you’ll need to carry a e-book to learn in between breaths.

What do my outcomes imply?

The quantity of hydrogen in your breath is measured in elements per million (ppm).

Your physician will have a look at how the quantity of hydrogen in your breath modifications after you drink the sugar answer. If the quantity of hydrogen in your breath will increase by greater than 20 ppm after ingesting the answer, you could have a sugar intolerance or SIBO, relying in your signs.

The underside line

A hydrogen breath take a look at is a reasonably easy, noninvasive technique to examine for sugar intolerance or SIBO. Nevertheless, there are particular tips it’s worthwhile to observe within the month main as much as the take a look at. Make sure that your physician goes over precisely what it’s worthwhile to do to arrange so your outcomes are correct.