What causes small intestinal bacterial overgrowth?Gastroenterology
DOCTOR’S ANSWER (1)
- SIBO stands for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.
- SIBO can be considered to be of two types. One is associated with identifiable diseases or conditions of the intestines. The other is not.
- SIBO of either type can give rise to similar symptoms including indigestion, diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain, and diarrhea or loose stools.
- The type associated with intestinal diseases and conditions may result in, the inability of the body to absorb nutrients from the intestine and may lead to malnutrition and vitamin deficiencies.
- The diagnosis is often one of exclusion, making certain that other causes of the symptoms are not present.
- Blood tests, breathe tests, and biopsies or tissue samples from the small intestine may be required to make the diagnosis of either type of SIBO.
- Antibiotics may be prescribed but the type and length of treatment depend upon the patient and the symptoms.
- Any underlying illness will also need to be addressed at the same time once therapy is started for SIBO.
- The prognosis depends upon how well the associated illnesses are managed and the response to therapy. Relapse is fairly common.
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