SIBO – Small Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth

sibo west orange nj

SIBO – Small Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth

Hydrogen breath test to diagnose several conditions that cause gastrointestinal symptoms. Gastrocure in West Orange, NJ performs the lactulose breath test to measure hydrogen in the breath. Please call Gastrocure at (973)736-1112 to schedule your test today.

The Lactulose Breath Test

What is the hydrogen breath test?

The hydrogen breath test is a test that uses the measurement of hydrogen in the breath to diagnose several conditions that cause gastrointestinal symptoms. In humans, only bacteria – specifically, anaerobic bacteria in the colon – are capable of producing hydrogen. The bacteria produce hydrogen when they are exposed to unabsorbed food, particularly sugars and carbohydrates, not proteins or fats. Although limited hydrogen is produced from the small amounts of unabsorbed food that normally reach the colon, large amounts of hydrogen may be produced when there is a problem with the digestion or absorption of food in the small intestine, that allows more unabsorbed food to reach the colon.

Large amounts of hydrogen also may be produced when the colon bacteria move back into the small intestine, a condition called bacterial overgrowth of the small bowel. In this latter instance, the bacteria are exposed to unabsorbed food that has not had a chance to completely traverse the small intestine to be fully digested and absorbed. Some of the hydrogen produced by the bacteria, whether in the small intestine or the colon, is absorbed into the blood flowing through the wall of the small intestine and colon. The hydrogen-containing blood travels to the lungs where the hydrogen is released and exhaled in the breath where it can be measured.


Two weeks (14 DAYS) before the test, you should stop taking:
• Antibiotics of any kind
• Pepto – Bismol
Do not eat or drink anything for 12 hours before the test

Avoid slowly digesting foods, like beans, pasta, fiber cereals and other high fiber foods the day before the test. Brush your teeth prior to the test.

Do not eat, drink, chew gum or tobacco, smoke cigarettes, eat breath mints or candy before or during the test.
Do not sleep or exercise vigorously for at least ½ hour before or any time during the test.

The test will take about 4 hours to complete. You will blow into an air collection bag and then drink a glass of liquid. Multiple breath samples will then be collected.

Bring reading material or something to do with you to keep you occupied during the 4 hours.
You may drive yourself home after the test since no sedation is involved

> Read Article: The Microbes in Your Gut May Be Making You Fat or Keeping You Thin.