Helicobacter pylori test
Helicobacter pylori is a rod-shaped, slightly bent bacterium which has protruding flagella. It reaches the stomach via the mouth and there it attacks the gastric mucosa. Normally, the gastric mucosa is protected by the stomach acid, but through the production of the enzyme urease, the helicobacter pylori splits ammoniac and carbon dioxide which neutralises the acidic area, protecting itself from the stomach acid. Helicobacter pylori also causes a higher production of stomach acid and additionally secretes toxins, which attack the gastric mucosa. If the helicobacter pylori infection is not treated, it remains in the stomach for the rest of our lives – as the body is incapable of fighting the bacterium without treatment from the outside. Helicobacter pylori infections cause almost ninety percent of all gastritis cases and eighty percent of gastric ulcer cases.
A helicobacter pylori infection can be, but is not necessarily, accompanied by symptoms. The symptoms of a helicobacter infection are similar to those of a classical gastritis. These include heartburn, nausea (with and without vomiting), flatulence, diarrhoea, and stomach pains. Helicobacter is also often associated with hives, neurodermatitis, itchy skin, psoriasis, and rosacea.
Verisana, with the help of a helicobacter pylori antigen test, checks if H. pylori antigens (substances that trigger the immune system to fight a H. pylori infection) are present in your stool. Stool antigen testing may be done to help support a diagnosis of a current H. pylori infection or to determine whether treatment for a H. pylori infection has been successful. Stool antigen tests provide the most conclusive evidence of the presence of H. pylori bacteria – it is the safest and most accurate of all H. pylori tests. The required stool sample can easily be taken at home and sent back to us for analysis.
Why doing a H. pylori stool antigen test and not a blood test?
Most H. pylori self-tests available online use blood samples to determine a H. pylori infection. As blood tests cannot differentiate between a past infection and the current status, they are considered to be the most inconclusive test to check for the presence of H. pylori antibodies. If you have been treated, blood tests can only show what your H. pylori status was up to 18 months ago. The urea breath test and stomach biopsy test often produce inconsistent results too.
In addition to the Helicobacter pylori analysis, Verisana also offers a more comprehensive stool analysis. With the comprehensive stool analysis your stool sample is examined to determine: 1.) candida and mould, as well as an examination of a mouth swab to determine candida; 2.) bacterial imbalance of the gut flora; 3.) pH-value of the stool; 4.) Maldigestion (decomposition of solid foods); 5.) Malabsorption (absorption capacity of the digested foods in the intestine); 6.) “Leaky gut“(intestinal permeability); 7.) Immune system of the intestines; 8.) Helicobacter pylori infestation.
Only a single stool sample is required for the determination of all these parameters. A free mouth swab for the determination of candida in the mouth is also included. Both can be easily collected by yourself, in the comfort of your own home.