The H. Pylori Breath Test
The H. pylori test, also known as the urea breath test, is one of the best ways to detect the presence of the Helicobacter pylori bacteria. This breath test can also be used to monitor both pharmacological and natural treatments for the eradication of H. pylori. It is the most sensitive test to determine complete eradication of H. Pylori.
H. pylori can be transmitted through saliva (easily passed on to family members), fecal matter, pets (especially dogs who can be carriers) tainted food and water. Symptoms can be mild to severe. Some potential H. pylori symptoms and complications are:
- Burning pain in the abdomen
- Acid reflux (GERD)
- Frequent burping
- Impaired digestion
- Gastric Autoimmunity
- Stomach cancer
How is the H. Pylori Breath Test Performed?
The lab technician will ask you to blow into a balloon-shaped bag. This is done to measure your baseline carbon dioxide levels. You will then be asked to drink a pleasant-tasting liquid (see important notes below) which, if H. pylori are present, will produce a significantly higher level of carbon dioxide. As drug or natural treatments are applied, lower levels should be seen.
- This test is not approved for those under 18 years of age.
- Please call the Patient Services Center in advance to check if they offer the H. Pylori breath test.
- The liquid contains phenylalanine. Phenylketonurics should be warned.
- One should fast for at least 1 hour before the test.
- One should not take antimicrobials, proton pump inhibitors, or bismuth preparations within two weeks prior to testing. Consult your doctor if you are required to take these medications continuously.
- One should consider the H. pylori blood test if the above applies.
What’s Being Tested:
- H. Pylori Breath Test (Urea Breath Test)