Testing for H. Pylori
A common question I get is ..... how do you know if you have H. Pylori? And, isn’t there more than one test for it?
There are actually a few testing options. The most common are:
- Blood test - Tests for antibodies to H. pylori
- Breath test - The test measures the amount of carbon dioxide you exhale. This indicates the presence of H. pylori in your stomach. (H. pylori produces an enzyme called urease, which breaks urea down into ammonia and carbon dioxide.) It is based upon the ability of H. pylori to convert urea to ammonia and carbon dioxide.
- GI MAP stool test - A stool antigen test looks for antigens to H. pylori in your stool. It relies on quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) technology to detect the bacteria, by targeting the specific DNA of the organisms tested.
In traditional medicine you will often see the breath test and sometimes the blood test being used. Holistic or functional medicine will use most commonly use the GI MAP test as it’s the most comprehensive, gives you a full picture of the whole gut microbiome (not just whether or not you have H. Pylori), and it gets to the root cause.
Have you been tested for this common bacteria? If so, what test did you have?