SIBO (Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth )

SIBO is am overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria in the small intestine. As per scientific facts over 84% people who suffer from IBS (Irritabal bowel syndrome) also suffer from SIBO.

SIBO patients also have 70% lesser cleansing waves than healthy people. (Cleansing waves occur every 90 minutes when the stomach is empty to clear the intestines.)

Symptoms :

Bloating or Dysbiosis/ Abdominal pain  1.2 hours after a meal which tends to remain for a long time.

• Diarrhea, constipation, gas, nausea, vomiting, weight loss, weight gain, fatigue, headaches, brain fog, joint pain, asthma, depression, anxiety, nutrient deficiencies, rashes, acne, eczema, and rosacea.

Causes are :

  • Low Stomach Acid
  • Long term use of GERD Medication
  • Patients with past GI surgery or infection.
  • A defective Ileocecal valve between the small intestine and colon
  • Impaired cleansing waves
  • Antibiotic use
  • Autoimmune issues

Diagnosis :

Diagnosis is usually done with a breath test using lactulose or glucose (lactulose is preferred). Samples of the breath are collected at regular intervals for up to three hours. 

Levels of hydrogen and methane gas in the breath are then measured. High levels of either or both gases above a predetermined threshold indicate a SIBO diagnosis.

SIBO with a predominance of hydrogen tends to be associated with more diarrhea, while methane predominance is usually seen in cases where constipation is one of the main symptoms.

Breath tests for SIBO are accurate in only about two-thirds of cases.

 New blood test IBSchek can look for a subset of SIBO that might have an autoimmune origin. This test looks for the presence of antibodies towards Cdt-B Distending Toxin B, a neurotoxin caused from gastroenteritis, and vinculin, a compound in the nerves and gut lining.

Organic uric acid test via urine can detect various metabolites that might provide hints as to the presence of SIBO or other forms of gut dysbiosis (data credit : ITN)

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