Breath Test H2 for lactose intolerance
Traditional hydrogen (H2) test for lactose intolerance.
Under normal conditions, lactose (disaccharide consisting of glucose and galactose) is digested in the small intestine by an enzyme, lactase, which releases the two monosaccharides, subsequently absorbed at the jejunum-ileal level (intermediate and final sections of the small intestine ). In the case of lactose intolerance, the partial / total lack of lactase does not allow the digestion of lactose, therefore it is fermented by the bacterial flora of the colon with the production of gas such as Hydrogen (H2). Most of the hydrogen is absorbed by the colon wall, enters the bloodstream and reaches the pulmonary alveoli to be expelled through the breath.
The most innovative test for the diagnosis of lactose intolerance is the Breath Test C13, based on Carbon instead of Hydrogen, and is available in our shop. We also offer this classic H2 test to expand the offer.
1. Withdraw basal exhalation (time 0) before administering the substrate (lactose): The patient must blow into the bag with the appropriate mouthpiece until it is full of air;
- With a syringe draw 20 cc of air from the bag;
- Immediately close the syringe with the cap;
- Mark the syringe with sticker # 1 on the back of the plunger.
2. Completely empty the bag;
3. Administer the patient the dose of lactose powder (20-25 g), dissolved in 200 ml of natural water;
4. In the following 4 hours, take the breath every 30 minutes (further 8 measurements), marking each syringe with the number of the "puff" performed;
5. Fill in the "technical data sheet" with the patient's data, the name of the requesting doctor and the e-mail for receiving the report.
INTERPRETATION OF THE RESULT
The appearance of a clinical symptomatology during and 8 hours after the test (12 total hours) can help confirm the positivity of the test.
Ailments can be caused by bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine (SIBO). For confirmation, it is suggested to perform the H2 breath glucose test.
Furthermore, the patient could be a "non H2-producer" in which the hydrogen produced is converted into methane (CH4). For confirmation, it is suggested to evaluate the concentration of methane in the exhale and / or contact a specialist to evaluate the presence of other pathologies.
Symptoms can arise from one to a few hours after lactose ingestion, and are the ones that most characterize lactose intolerance:
- Abdominal pain
- Abdominal bloating
- Diarrhea or constipation
a) In the 15 days before the exam, the patient must avoid taking antibiotics.
b) In the 7 days preceding the examination, the patient must not do any therapy based on: lactic, prokinetic and laxative enzymes.
The use of antibiotic therapies or the abuse of laxatives can reduce the intestinal flora, compromising the test result.
c) The day before the exam: Avoid: Complex carbohydrates and fibers (fruit, vegetables, bread, pasta and legumes); Alcohol and carbonated drinks; Candies and chewing gum; Seasonings except for a little oil.
Respect the following food instructions: Breakfast: a glass of barley tea or coffee. Lunch: boiled rice seasoned with a little oil, or grilled meat / fish seasoned with a little oil. Snack: barley tea or coffee.
Dinner: boiled rice seasoned with a little oil, or grilled meat / fish seasoned with a little oil. Drinks: still or mineral carbonated water.
d) On the day of the exam:
Fasting for at least 8/10 hours; Avoid drinking water or, if necessary, drink only half a glass of non-carbonated water; Absolutely avoid smoking; Avoid undergoing excessive physical exertion; Brushing your teeth is allowed.
e) Before the exam, oral wash with a chlorhexidine based mouthwash.
f) During the exam:
Avoid sleeping; Avoid drinking (even water); Absolutely avoid smoking; Inform the doctor about the manifestation of some symptoms in order to facilitate interpretation of the examination.
You can read more about it in the following article of our BLOG: