Do you experience a gnawing or burning sensation in your belly that improves after you eat? You may have a Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection, which may cause gastritis or peptic ulcers. If you’re looking for answers, the board-certified gastroenterologists at Digestive Disease Consultants of Orange County in Irvine, Huntington Beach, Tustin, and Foothill Ranch, California, can help. They offer noninvasive breath testing to determine if you have the H. pylori bacteria. To learn more about breath testing and how it can give you the answers you need, contact the office closest to you by phone or book online today.
Breath testing is a noninvasive diagnostic tool that analyzes the gasses in your breath to diagnose various gastrointestinal conditions.
Digestive Disease Consultants of Orange County offers breath testing to detect Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infections.
H. pylori is an intestinal bacteria that causes a number of gastrointestinal problems. In addition to being responsible for about 80% of stomach ulcer cases, an H. pylori infection may also place you at higher risk of developing stomach (gastric) cancer.
With an H. pylori infection, you may experience many of the common symptoms associated with gastritis (stomach inflammation) and peptic ulcer disease.
These symptoms may include abdominal pain or a burning and gnawing sensation that feels worse when your stomach is empty.
Breath testing is the best way to know if you or your loved one has H. pylori.
The team at Digestive Disease Consultants of Orange County provides specific guidelines on the steps you need to take to prepare for your breath testing. You may be advised to stop eating and smoking an hour before your test.
Your gastroenterologist may also request that you stop taking various medications that may interfere with the results of your test for up to two weeks before the in-office procedure. This may include certain antibiotics and bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol®).
Breath testing is an in-office test that takes 10-15 minutes. During the test, your gastroenterologist first collects a breath sample.
You then drink a special solution and your exhaled breath is analyzed. If you have an H. pylori infection, carbon dioxide is released, absorbed by your bloodstream, and exhaled out through your lungs.
The team at Digestive Disease Consultants of Orange County provides same-day results for H. pylori breath testing, and the procedure is covered by your insurance.
If you test positive for H. pylori, your gastroenterologist prescribes a course of antibiotics, which is followed by a second breath test to ensure the bacteria has been destroyed.
To get answers to explain the burning or gnawing sensation in your stomach, contact Digestive Disease Consultants of Orange County by phone or book your visit online today.