H. Pylori Infection Test
Think spicy food is the cause of your stomach ulcers? Think again – it’s probably the result of an H. pylori infection.
What is H. pylori?
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a type of bacterium that lives in the gut.
What are the symptoms of H. pylori infection?
Usually there aren’t any. H. pylori can live in the gut for years without causing any adverse effects, but when it attacks the stomach lining it can trigger ulcers.
How did I catch it?
It’s usually caught in childhood, most commonly when living in cramped conditions, or from a lack of clean water, or from someone else with an H. Pylori infection.
How do I get tested?
Book a simple blood test now.
Did You Know?
Between half and two thirds of the world’s population will have H. pylori bacteria in their gut, but only some people become ill from it.
What is an H. pylori infection?
Stomach ulcers were once commonly thought to be the result of lifestyle choices. Smoking, alcohol, spicy foods and stress were all believed to be triggers.
But we now believe that’s rarely, if ever, the case and that most stomach ulcers are the result of carrying Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori for short) bacteria in the gut.
H. pylori can sit in the gut for years and it’s possible to have an infection without knowing it because it doesn’t always cause symptoms.
Sometimes, however, the H. pylori bacteria can attack the stomach lining. The stomach lining is important because it prevents the acids that occur naturally in the gut from damaging the stomach walls. If H. pylori damages the lining, the acid is free to attack the stomach, and ulcers can be the result.
So, H. pylori is a common – if not the most common – cause of stomach ulcers and whilst stress, spicy food etc may make the symptoms worse, it does not seem that they cause it.
How did I catch H. pylori infection?
H. pylori enters the system through contaminated water, saliva or other bodily fluids. It’s more common in developing countries where people are more likely to be living in cramped conditions, or with an unclean water supply, but anyone can catch H. pylori from someone who already had an infection.
We don’t yet understand why the bacteria have an adverse effect on some people and not others. What are the symptoms of a stomach ulcer?
Whilst the symptoms of a H. pylori infection may not always be apparent, the symptoms of stomach ulcers will be. They include:
- A dull stomach ache or a burning pain, usually between meals. Drinking milk or taking an antacid liquid or tablet may help relieve it
- Unexplained weight loss
Why is it important to diagnose H. pylori?
An untreated stomach ulcer can lead to internal bleeding. Treatment usually requires surgery, but if you identify the ulcer early enough you can treat it before it bursts and avoid the need for surgery.
If you test positive for H. pylori, it can normally be treated simply with antibiotics.
How do I get tested?
To get tested please contact Better2Know your Body on the number above or click book now.