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What is urea breath test?

May 8, 2013

The urea breath test is a non-invasive option often used to detect Helicobacter pylori before as well as after one has been treated. It is a rapidly growing diagnostic method for identifying infections caused by H. pylori in the stomach. There are no risks or complications associated with the urea breath test.

H. pylori are known to cause inflammation, ulcers, and atrophy of the stomach. This bacterium has the ability to breakdown urea into carbon dioxide, which is then absorbed from the stomach and eliminated in the breath. The H. pylori infection will eventually irritate and destroy the stomach lining. H. pylori are also a risk factor for diseases such as gastric cancer and the onset of malignant stomach lymphoma.

It is fairly simple to conduct the urea breath test. The patient needs to swallow a capsule containing urea which is made from an isotope of carbon. The urea breaks down into carbon dioxide. This carbon dioxide gets absorbed into the blood, which travels to the lungs and gets excreted in the breath. The breath samples are then collected and the amount of carbon exhaled is measured. A baseline breath sample and a 15 minute Post-Dose breath sample are collected into breath bags. The breath samples will be tested to see whether they contain material formed when H. pylori comes into contact with the radioactive material. The urea breath test usually takes about 1.5 hours. If the results are positive, this means that H.pylori is present in the patient's stomach. The degree of infection is measured after calculating the measurements between the pre and post urea testing.

If the isotope of carbon is detected in the breath, it means that H. pylori are present in the stomach. If the isotope is not found, H. pylori are not present. If the results are positive, H. pylori can be effectively treated with antibiotics.

There are generally two types of urea breath tests for diagnosing the presence of the bateria in the stomach. The first test uses a very small dose of urea that is labeled with a radioactive isotope of carbon, and the other uses urea that is labeled with a non-radioactive isotope of carbon. The non-radioactive isotope has no adverse effects.

You must remember that the urea breath test is best conducted after a period of 14 days after you stop the acid reducing medication or 4 weeks after stopping all antibiotic treatment. You must not eat or drink for at least six hours before a breath test. It is a painless diagnostic procedure and is highly sensitive. It tests the entire gastric mucosa for active H. pylori infections. It is vital that infection gets treated on time. If left untreated, H. pylori continues producing inflammatory cytokines that may cause chronic gastritis and ulceration.

Submitted by M T on May 8, 2013 at 01:34

What are the side effects of urea breath test?

The Urea Breath test measures the amount of carbon dioxide in the exhaled breath of the patient. The Urea Breath test is a diagnostic tool used to determine the presence of a stomach infection caused by the Helicopter Pylori bacterium. The test is based on the principle that urea is broken down to carbon dioxide if there is a presence of the H. pylori bacterium in your stomach.

The Urea breath test is a simple, non-invasive procedure that requires the patient to swallow a capsule containing some amount of urea. Once this urea is released into the stomach, depending on the presence of absence of the bacterium, it will be broken down to carbon dioxide and travel to the lungs through the bloodstream and ultimately be eliminated in the breath. The exhaled breath of the patient is then measured for levels of the isotope. There are no major side effects of the urea breath test. Some doctors recommend that Phenylketonuric patients should not take the test, as there are urea breath side effects that may affect them.

One way to minimize any possible risks of the urea breath test false positive is to ensure an efficient reading of the results. To this end, it is important that the patient should not eat or drink for at least 6 hours before the test. Prescription medication such as antibiotics, H2 blockers, and proton pump inhibitors may also have to be stopped prior to the test.

Submitted by N on January 2, 2012 at 11:14

What is Carbon Urea Breath Test?

The Urea Breath Test (UBT) or Carbon Urea Breath Test is a diagnostic test used to determine the occurrence of the H. Pylori or Helicopter pylori bacterium in your stomach. The H. pylori bacterium is responsible for several disorders affecting the stomach including ulcers, stomach inflammation and atrophy.

The principle behind the Carbon 14 Urea Breath test or the Carbon 13 Urea Breath test relies on the fact that the H. pylori bacterium breaks down urea to form carbon dioxide. This carbon dioxide is then breathed out after being released into the stomach.

For the test, the patient will have to ingest a capsule of urea that is made using an isotope mainly of carbon. If there is a presence of H. pylori in the area of the stomach, this urea will be broken down to carbon dioxide will travel to the lungs through the bloodstream and will be excreted through the breath. Therefore a sample of the breath that is exhales is taken and the levels of carbon dioxide are measured.

If the carbon isotope is found in the exhaled breath or the test is positive, it entails the existence of the H. pylori bacteria. If there is no presence of the carbon isotope or the test is negative, it indicates an absence of infection or that the infection has been successfully treated.

Submitted by N on December 13, 2011 at 10:19

What is the cost of urea breath test?

The Urea Breath test is a simple, non-invasive test used to diagnose the cause of stomach disorders such as ulcers and inflammation. Since the H. pylori bacteria cause these stomach problems, the Urea breath test determines the existence of this bacterium in your stomach. The urea breath test is a simple procedure and is conducted in the doctor's clinic. This medical test involves the intake of a capsule containing urea. If there is a presence of the H. pylori bacterium, once this urea reaches the stomach it will be broken down to carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide will travel to the lungs through the blood stream and get eliminated through the breath. At this point, various breath samples will be collected and evaluated for the existence of carbon isotopes. The test would be positive if the occurrence of carbon dioxide in the breath indicates that there is an infection.

The Urea breath test is a relatively risk free procedure and has no known side effects. The average cost of the urea breath test is USD 15 however the rate of the urea breath test may vary from state to state.

The Urea breath test cost is also dependent on the clinic where it is conducted and the respective fees and charges.

Submitted by N on December 7, 2011 at 10:49

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