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Hydrogen-Methane Breath Testing

Call Us Today:

1300 837 863


Q: How do I know if I need a test?

The necessity of the test is symptoms driven. Some common symptoms include:

  • Diarrhoea
  • Constipation
  • Bloating
  • Stomach noises
  • Flatulence
  • Headaches
  • Lethargy

If you experience one or all of these symptoms you may be suffering from “Irritable Bowel Symptom” (IBS).   

Q: Do I need a doctors referral?

 You can be self referred - however, your results will be reviewed by a specialist FODMAP Dietitian prior to you receiving your results. You will be provided with a detailed review of what your results mean and how to move forward with dietary intervention if recommended.

Q: What is Lactulose and why is the test necessary?

Lactulose is a synthetic sugar not able to be absorbed by the body. It is used as a baseline test for each patient.
The Lactulose test is used:

  • To provide an indication of the patient’s oro-caecal transit time.
  • To assess the patient’s level of hydrogen and methane production in order to cross-reference with subsequent sugar tests.
  • To evaluate bacterial overgrowth (noted by an early rise in breath hydrogen).

Q. Are the tests invasive?

No needles or invasive components are used in these tests. However patients may experience symptoms such as increased bowel movements, flatulence, or stomach noises.

Q: Where are the in-clinic tests offered?

Q: What is the difference between doing the test at home and taking the test in the clinic?

The process is exactly the same whether you do the testing at home or in the clinic. However the pre-test diet and other considerations are especially important if the tests are done at home.

Q: Can I do all the tests on one day?

You will need to book in for separate appointments for each test requested. These appointments need to be at least one day apart (ex on a Monday, Wednesday, and Friday) to ensure that the sugar from the previous test has completely left your system.

Q: What medications am I allowed to take prior to the test?

Patients will need to refrain from taking the following medications prior to testing:
Antibiotics or Probiotics
Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPIs) commonly known as medications for reflux (ex. Nexium, Pariet, Losec)
Follow pretest diet guidelines outlined in Pretest booklet.

Q: How do I book a test or order a test kit?

Contact our Head Office at 1300 837 863 to make any bookings. Test kits can be ordered online via Order a Test Kit or by ringing our Head Office.

Q: Why do I need to follow a pretest diet?

The diet is designed to clear your body of the sugars we are testing for, and by doing so lowering bacterial activity prior to the testing.

Q: Can I have any foods that aren’t listed? What if they seem like they would be okay?

If a food is not listed on the diet, it cannot be eaten, with no exceptions. Even if a food seems to be okay, if the food is not on the list, the foods sugar levels have not been tested in our laboratories and hence cannot be eaten.

Q: Can I only eat every 3 hours?

You can eat as frequently as you would like! The three hour increments only refer to the amount of food you are allowed to eat from each category listed per 3 hours.

Q: Can I drink water during the fasting period or during the test?

Yes you can drink small sips of water up until 30 minutes prior to your test, and again an hour into your test.

Q: Should I brush my teeth the morning of the test?

Yes we recommend brushing your teeth to clear your mouth of any bacteria. Do not use mouthwash.

Q: How long will the testing take?

The testing in-clinic will be anywhere from 2-3 hours. One test may be the full 3 hours, while the next test may only be 2 hours in length. Releasing of the patients is dependent upon that patient's results.

Q: Can I eat anything I want after the testing?

Yes, in terms of testing procedures you can eat whatever you would like once test is complete. However, because you will receive a standard serving size amount of sugar during the test, it is advised to stick to low FODMAP foods immediately following testing to avoid possible symptoms with a FODMAP sugar overload.

Q: Where will my results be sent?

The results will be faxed directly to your referring practitioner. 

Q: How long will it take for the results to be sent out?

You or your doctor will receive your results within 5-7 working days from your last test.  

Q: I don’t have a dietician in mind. Can you recommend someone to me??

We work closely with the dietitians at FODMAP Nutrition & Dietetics.  

Follow the link to the 

FODMAP Nutrition & Dietetics website or call them at +613 9845 7144