What Are the Signs of Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth?
Most people rarely think about their digestive tract. For people with gastrointestinal conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and others, however, the digestive tract can be a constant source of stress, anxiety, and even physical discomfort. One GI issue you may be less familiar with is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth – or SIBO – which shares many of the symptoms of IBS and often affects patients who are already known to have IBS. Below you’ll find a helpful guide on recognizing the signs and symptoms of SIBO from the expert team at Cameron Wellness and Spa, as well as information regarding your options for SIBO treatment in Salt Lake City, UT.
What is SIBO?
SIBO, which stands for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, is a condition of the GI tract characterized by the accumulation of an excess of bacteria in the small intestine. While bacteria is normally present in the GI tract and can actually play a beneficial role in digestion and other processes, when too much bacteria moves from the large intestine into the small intestine, it can create issues that ultimately lead to SIBO.
What causes SIBO?
There are several potential causes of SIBO, including slow digestion, food poisoning, an underlying medical condition, structural abnormalities, and others. In some patients, these problems cause an accumulation of bacteria in the small intestine, where limited space leads to uncomfortable symptoms.
What are the symptoms of SIBO?
Because SIBO shares many of its symptoms with other gastrointestinal conditions, it can be difficult to know with certainty whether or not you have SIBO without the help of a medical provider. Below are some of the most common signs and symptoms of SIBO:
- Profound bloating
- Gas (can be painful)
- Stomach pain
- Unintended weight loss
- Malnutrition/nutritional deficiency
- Loss of appetite
How is SIBO diagnosed?
To obtain an accurate diagnosis for SIBO, our providers will prescribe a lactulose breath test (LBT), which is self-administered in the comfort of your own home. Following a 24-hour dietary prep, you will swallow a special solution containing lactulose. Every 20 minutes for a three-hour period, you’ll then blow into the LBT tube, which measures certain components in the breath to ultimately reveal whether or not you have SIBO.
How is SIBO treated?
If you are found on an LBT to have SIBO, our team will work with you to develop a customized treatment plan specific to your condition. Depending on the likely cause of your SIBO, your symptoms, and other factors, our providers may recommend an elemental diet, antibiotics, or another SIBO therapy option. Our ultimate goal is to help you achieve rapid relief from your SIBO symptoms and prevent recurrent episodes of SIBO in the future so that you can once again enjoy your daily life with comfort and confidence.
Break free from SIBO
SIBO, IBS, and other GI disorders can be exceptionally disruptive and discouraging, but there is hope. To learn more about your options for treating and preventing SIBO, call Cameron Wellness and Spa in Salt Lake City, UT to schedule your private consultation with one of our caring providers today. We look forward to helping you regain your life and overcome SIBO.