What is SIBO?
- Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, or SIBO, is an excess amount of bacteria located in the small intestine.
If you have SIBO, you may experience:
- increased passing of gas (flatulence)
- diarrhea or constipation
- abdominal pain
- low stomach acid
- hormonal imbalance
What are the factors?
In severe cases, the small intestine may not be able to absorb the proper nutrients which can then cause anemia (iron deficiency) and some weight loss.
Who’s at risk?
Patients with previous health conditions such as with diabetes, lupus, scleroderma, HIV and immunoglobulin A deficiency are to be considered at a high risk for SIBO.
How is it diagnosed?
This is diagnosed by a specialist such as a gastroenterologist, who confirms diagnosis with a positive result from a lactulose breath test.
What are common treatments, diet, and lifestyle recommendations?
Treatment varies by case: mild, moderate, to severe.
Once confirmed positive you will begin with a 14 day treatment of antibiotics, then transition to antimicrobials with a combination of a strict diet and lifestyle recommendations for maintenance.
These signs and symptoms could signal an underlying digestive condition. Intestinal symptoms can be embarrassing — but don’t let embarrassment keep you from seeking help.