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Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) Specialist

Gastroenterology Associates of Fredericksburg

Gastroenterology located in Fredericksburg, VA & Stafford, VA

If you have ongoing nausea, abdominal pain, bloating, or diarrhea, it could be due to small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. At Gastroenterology Associates of Fredericksburg in Fredericksburg and Stafford, Virginia, the expert team of gastroenterologists diagnoses and treats your condition to reduce symptoms and the risk of complications. Schedule an appointment by calling the office or booking online today.

Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)

What is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth?

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, also known as SIBO, causes abnormal increases in small intestinal bacteria, especially the bacteria not usually present in that part of your intestine. SIBO can lead to unpleasant symptoms when left untreated.

What are the symptoms of small intestinal bacterial overgrowth?

Common symptoms of SIBO include:

  • Bloating
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain 
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Malnutrition
  • Feeling uncomfortably full

Complications such as poor fat, protein, and carbohydrate absorption, osteoporosis vitamin deficiencies, and kidney stones might develop if you don’t seek treatment for small intestinal bowel overgrowth.

What are the risk factors for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth?

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth can happen to anyone, but some factors increase your risk of having it. Examples include:

  • Complications of abdominal surgery
  • Small intestine structural problems or injuries
  • Gastric surgery for obesity
  • History of radiation therapy
  • Diverticulitis 
  • The abnormal passageway of two bowel segments
  • Some medical conditions

In addition, some conditions may boost your risk of SIBO, including celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, diabetes, and scleroderma, as well as radiation enteritis (small intestinal inflammation). 

How does my provider diagnose SIBO?

To determine if you have small intestinal bacterial overgrowth and treat it, the Gastroenterology Associates of Fredericksburg team reviews your medical history and symptoms, checks your vital signs, and completes a physical exam. 

Your provider conducts diagnostic testing in the office, saving you a trip to an outside lab. Tests may include breath testing, small intestine fluid culture and aspirate procedures, blood testing, X-rays, CT scans, and MRIs.

How is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth treated?

Common treatments for SIBO include antibiotic therapy, surgery to repair postoperative problems, eliminating bacterial overgrowth, and correcting nutritional deficiencies. Your gastroenterologist could recommend that you take dietary supplements or follow a lactose-free diet to avoid small intestinal damage.

They tailor each treatment for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth based on your individualized needs, giving you the best outcome with the lowest risk of complications. 

To learn more about small intestinal bacterial overgrowth and find out if you have it, call the Gastroenterology Associates of Fredericksburg office or book an appointment online today.