Small intestine bacterial overgrowth

Posted by momochan @momochan, Apr 6, 2016

Hi, I have been suffering from small intestine bacterial overgrowth since last Jan. Have gone through a few courses of antibiotics, but whenever it finished, it came back and the stool got loose. I really am desperate, could anyone have suggestion? .

Hi @momochan and welcome to Connect.
I’m tagging @zwar @gfamy @gregoryd @melaniewa @jwatch who have all discussed overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine (SIBO) here. I hope they will join this discussion thread and offer some thoughts from their experiences.

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What are the symptoms of this condition?

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Take mega doses of probiotics. VSL 3 is one!

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@hiho

What are the symptoms of this condition?

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In my case, it is chronic diarrhea.

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My gastro doctor found that my pancreas was not functioning properly. I was nauseous and losing weight. As she explained, the food I was eating was literally passing through my digestive track or sitting there rotting. I was not getting any nutrients from the food I was eating, thus, weight loss and loose stools. She prescribed EnteraGam, VSL 3 probiotics. Plus I take Pertzye Capsules with every meal and snack( as my pancreas was not providing the enzymes my body needed to help digest the food and maintain the nutrients I needed from the food). I have been taking them a month and this is helping me to regain strength, not as nauseated and for the first time in a year…..I had not lost weight….had not gained any but she says that will come as my body adjusts. My PCP totally missed the dx of the non functioning pancreas. Hope this helps someone.

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I have SIBO. But so far no antibiotics has help. What is out there? My foods & medicine have shown up on my up endoscopy & I can’t hardly eat even smoothie before I go to the bathroom

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Hi @vwerner and welcome to Connect! I’ve moved your post over to this thread since we had a number of members already discussing SIBO here. Be sure to read through the comments above. I’d also like to introduce you to @zwar @gfamy @gregoryd @melaniewa @jwatch who have all discussed overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine (SIBO) here. I hope they will join in and offer some thoughts from their experiences.

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I had the SIBO breath test done in my GI doc’s office, and I, too, have a confirmed diagnosis for SIBO. I am currently taking a 14 day course of the antibiotic Xifaxan, 550 mg, 3 times a day (it is very expensive–no generic). It specifically targets the small intestine where SIBO lies. I sure hope it works as I have been dealing with SIBO since January. My first GI doc did not do the test. He simply diagnosed it empirically based on my GI history and symptoms, and put me on antibiotics (mainly Cipro) which I had to stay on until June because every time I finished a 10 day course, my symptoms returned. Finally, I got better in June and he decided to put me on broad spectrum antibiotics for 5 days, then 25 days off; repeat with 5 days of a different antibiotic, then 25 days off, then a 3rd antibiotic, repeat the cycle for at least a year. My general practitioner and I decided this was only treating the symptoms & keeping them at bay, not addressing the problem, and my GP was also concerned, as was I, about the chance of Cdiff from long term use of so many antibiotics, so he referred me to a gastroenterologist he recommended. This is where I had the breath test done and was prescribed the Xifaxan.

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@vwerner

I have SIBO. But so far no antibiotics has help. What is out there? My foods & medicine have shown up on my up endoscopy & I can’t hardly eat even smoothie before I go to the bathroom

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I just posted earlier today about my SIBO experience. Perhaps you will see that post, but I am currently on a 14 day course of Xifaxan, 550 mg, 3 times a day. This antibiotic specifically targets the small intestine, but as I said in my post, it is quite expensive. You’ll need to have good prescription drug insurance. Once the infection clears, then you and your doctor have to address the cause of the SIBO or it will probably return. It is a difficult, uncomfortable, and frustrating infection to deal with. I have also found that keeping as much sugar as possible out of my diet has helped tremendously. Bad gut bacteria just feeds off of sugar, so I avoid it, and that helps. I hope you get better.

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@janovr

My gastro doctor found that my pancreas was not functioning properly. I was nauseous and losing weight. As she explained, the food I was eating was literally passing through my digestive track or sitting there rotting. I was not getting any nutrients from the food I was eating, thus, weight loss and loose stools. She prescribed EnteraGam, VSL 3 probiotics. Plus I take Pertzye Capsules with every meal and snack( as my pancreas was not providing the enzymes my body needed to help digest the food and maintain the nutrients I needed from the food). I have been taking them a month and this is helping me to regain strength, not as nauseated and for the first time in a year…..I had not lost weight….had not gained any but she says that will come as my body adjusts. My PCP totally missed the dx of the non functioning pancreas. Hope this helps someone.

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@janovr I am sorry that you are going through this, we are currently go through some GI issues with my son and it is a frustrating experience. If you don’t mind me asking, what tests showed your pancreas not functioning properly? And I hope you continue to feel better!

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Is there a preferred antibiotic for treatment that might help prevent SIBO recurrence and what diet and supplements work best after the preferred course of antibiotics to prevent a recurrence?

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@azdrew

Is there a preferred antibiotic for treatment that might help prevent SIBO recurrence and what diet and supplements work best after the preferred course of antibiotics to prevent a recurrence?

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@azdrew, Hello and Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect!

In this community you will find other members that are connecting and supporting each other through their heath care journey.

Please let me introduce you to @momochan, @zwar, @gfamy, @gregoryd, @melaniewa, @jwatch, @lateacher, @vwerner, @hiho, who have all discussed SIBO. I hope they will join conversation, and offer some thoughts from their experiences.

Have you been newly diagnosed? What have you been doing for diet thus far?

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