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Scand J Gastroenterol. 1983 Mar;18(2):289-98.

Bacterial overgrowth in jejunal and ileal disease.


The number of bacteria recovered in anaerobic cultures of jejunal secretions was significantly higher in a group of 10 patients with jejunal disease and stagnation of gut content in the proximal small bowel than in a group of 10 patients with similar conditions in the distal ileum. Some overlap in bacterial numbers occurred between patients with jejunal disease, ileal disease, and healthy controls, whereas production of fermentation gas in anaerobic media supplemented with glucose occurred only in cultures from the patients with jejunal disease. The 14C-glycocholic acid test showed increased output of breath 14CO2 in both patient groups, whereas faecal 14C was significantly increased only in patients with ileal disease. Increased breath hydrogen excretion after glucose ingestion was recorded in 8 of 10 patients with jejunal disease only. Breath methane excretion, previously found in 44% of healthy subjects, was absent in all of 28 patients with Crohn's disease of the small, indicating that these patients have a gut flora that is different from that of the healthy population.

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