SIBO is bowel disorder is difficult to diagnose It causes symptoms similar to other disorders. The problem is that SIBO is treated with antibiotics, so if the medical diagnosis is wrong, the person is taking medication or changing their diet, the treatment can exacerbate the patient’s problems as the gut microbiota can be damaged.
What is SIBR?
SIBO is overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine (“an overgrowth of bacterial growth in the small intestine”), which is associated with discomfort such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, gas, nausea, bloating, or constipation. Also, in severe cases, it can alter nutrient absorption, leading to other imbalances.
Symptoms result from the fermentation of sugars in foods bacteria in the small intestine. The problem is that these same symptoms appear with many other bowel problems.
Why does SIBO occur?
In a healthy digestive system, there are very few bacteria in the small intestine. Are breed when there are some changes, as slowing down the passage of food, insufficiency in the production of pancreatic enzymes and gastric acid, or a change in the ileocecal valve, which allows the “invasion” of bacteria from the colon.
SIBO can manifest itself as secondary disorder of other diseases, especially irritable bowel syndrome, but also ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, pancreatitis, liver disease or celiac disease, among others. Therefore, in these cases, it is necessary to treat not only SIBO, but also the causative disease. Another common cause of SIBO is gastric bypass surgery for obesity.
SIBO has also been associated with type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, or consumption of gastric “protectors” such as omeprazole, although there are no conclusive studies.
How is SIBO diagnosed?
SIBO is a term that is often searched on Google, which means that many people believe that they may be suffering from this problem. Many even go to the doctor saying they have SIBO. Others do not even go to the doctor and self-medicate or change their diet based on erroneous self-diagnosis.
However, even after consulting a doctor, it is difficult to make a 100% reliable diagnosis. Experts such as Dr. Eamonn Quigley and David M. Underwood believe that until now there is no good reliable diagnostic method illness.
Dr. Francisco Garner, a gastroenterologist at the Val d’Hebron hospital in Barcelona, explains that the traditional method for diagnosing SIBO is analysis of the fluid present in the small intestine, It is removed by endoscopy. It is an invasive and slow diagnostic method.
What is a breath test?
Another method is breath test, observe the amount of exhaled hydrogen after taking lactulose (synthetic sugar). If the proportion of hydrogen is high, then unwanted fermentation has occurred in the small intestine. This test is usually sufficient to diagnose SIBO and prescribe antibiotic therapy. However, according to Garner, this can lead to many false positives. In order to avoid errors, it is advisable to combine the results of analyzes with a good study of the clinical situation of the patient.
What are the consequences of improper treatment?
Unnecessary prescription of antibiotics, especially repeated courses, can lead to changes in the colon microbiota which, in turn, is related to the functioning of the immune system, energy metabolism or nutrient absorption.
Altering the microbiota may cause more digestive symptoms, inflammation, weight gain, repeated infections and even resistant to drugs and mood changes.
If this is not SIBR, then what is?
Bloating and other mild intestinal complaints often do not reveal pathology, but simply a consequence of the digestion of food that we were able to eat in excess.
More intense discomfort requires a visit to the doctor and follow-up over time. In addition to a wide range of digestive problems, symptoms can be related to food intolerances and allergies, which are diagnosed with special tests.
To avoid digestive symptoms, it is recommended to follow a diet based on a wide variety of natural, home-cooked foods, without ultra-processed foods. You should also avoid stress, sleep well and rest.