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Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) Specialists

Gotham Gastroenterology -  - Gastroenterology

Gotham Gastroenterology

Gastroenterologists located in Manhattan, New York, and Brooklyn, NY

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is diagnosed when you have the wrong type of bacteria in your small intestine. This can negatively affect digestion and lead to gas, abdominal pain, and fatigue. At Gotham Gastroenterology, with locations throughout New York City in the Midtown East and Financial District neighborhoods of Manhattan, New York, and Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, the skilled gastroenterologists evaluate your symptoms to diagnose and treat this sometimes difficult-to-identify condition. To experience relief from SIBO, call the nearest location or book online.

Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) Q & A

Why Do I Have SIBO?

SIBO occurs when bacteria from other parts of your intestine infiltrate the small intestine. This can occur because of a lack of movement in the small intestine due to structural or anatomical abnormalities. 

Other risk factors for developing SIBO include:

  • Diverticulitis
  • Having pH changes in the small bowel
  • Surgery, especially some forms of gastric bypass
  • Scar adhesions that developed after radiation therapy or multiple abdominal surgeries
  • A build-up of proteins
  • Use of certain narcotics or antispasmodic medications to treat irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Diminished immunity as happens with diabetes, scleroderma, lupus, and HIV

People with celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, cirrhosis, and IBS may also be at risk for SIBO.

What are the Symptoms of SIBO?

SIBO is sometimes hard to diagnose because many of its symptoms are similar to those caused by other conditions. The symptoms include:

  • Bloating and cramps
  • Excessive gas
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Nausea
  • Regular feelings of fullness
  • Fatigue
  • Abdominal pain, especially following meals

SIBO can lead to nutritional deficiencies, weight loss, and anemia.

How is SIBO Diagnosed?

If you have symptoms of SIBO, the doctors at Gotham Gastroenterology perform a thorough physical exam as well as blood, fecal, and urine tests to rule out other potential causes. 

A breath test is commonly used to diagnose SIBO, and the team offers both in-office and at-home versions. Excess bacteria that builds up in your small intestine releases gasses that can be identified through this test. The test is painless and noninvasive. 

Prior to the test, you’ll need to fast overnight. You breathe into a tube, drink a sweet drink provided by the office, and then breathe into a series of other tubes at specific intervals following consumption of the beverage. 

If the breath test is inconclusive, the doctors may take a sample of the fluid from your small bowel to detect any abnormal bacteria.

How is SIBO Treated?

The doctors may prescribe antibiotics to help resolve the abnormal bacterial growth. They may also recommend dietary adjustments such as reducing the size of meals to avoid having a lot of food sitting in your stomach at one time.

Probiotics, such as those found in yogurt and kombucha, may also help restore your gut health.

Resolve the digestive distress caused by SIBO so you can live your life again. Call the Gotham Gastroenterology office nearest you or book your consultation online.