What is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth?
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) leads to chronic gastrointestinal issues that can be uncomfortable and often embarrassing. Though SIBO isn’t well-understood, medical experts find that the following issues may increase your risk:
• Decreased intestinal muscle activity.
• Inherited small bowel abnormalities.
• Changes in the pH of your bowels.
• Weakened immune system.
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is also commonly associated with celiac and Crohn’s disease, as well as irritable bowel syndrome.
What are the symptoms of SIBO?
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth symptoms typically affect your gut. You may notice that you have abdominal cramping and bloating in addition to:
SIBO is also known to make you feel like you’re full all of the time, which can become uncomfortable. It’s even common to experience unexplained weight loss. If you’re experiencing any of these SIBO-related issues, contact Los Angeles Primary Care for an evaluation.
What is SIBO testing?
Dr. Ramadan and the physicians at Los Angeles Primary Care commonly recommend a breath test to diagnose SIBO. This simple, test requires you to breathe into a tube and drink a specialized beverage over a period of several hours. The test measures the release of hydrogen and methane gasses, which are clear indicators that SIBO is present.
Once it is confirmed that you have SIBO and rules out related conditions, the physicians will counsel you about treatment paths.
How does a doctor treat SIBO?
Treating small intestinal bacterial overgrowth generally requires a combination of prescription medications and dietary changes. Dr. Ramadan and the physicians may recommend the following:
• Gluten avoidance.
• Consuming smaller meals.
You may also benefit from low-fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols diet or FODMAP. Avoiding certain carbohydrate-rich foods may resolve your symptoms and help you recover from SIBO.