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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Can external lactose enzyme supplements help in passing hydrogen breath test?

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Dr. Ramesh Kumar

Gastroenterologist

Practicing since :1986

Answered : 1892 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 23 Mar 2017 in Digestion and Bowels
Question: Hi,
I am scheduled for lactose intolerance test( hydrogen breath) what would happen if I would take lactase enzyme tablets before and during the test? I been diagnosed with positive lactose intolerance already. I really need to pass the test as negative.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Ramesh Kumar 31 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Most likely you will pass the test.

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
Thanks for choosing HealthcareMagic for your query,

Lactase enzyme is normally produced by the body to help break down lactose.The basic problem for lactose intolerant people is that they are not producing enough of the lactase enzyme to properly digest all the lactose in milk.
Hydrogen breath test requires you to drink a liquid that contains high levels of lactose.Measure Hydrogen in your breath at regular intervals.In a Normal person very little hydrogen is detectable. However if your body doesn't digest the lactose,it will ferment in the colon,releasing hydrogen, which is not absorbed by your intestines and eventually exhaled which will show that you are lactose intolerant.
As per your question if you will take external lactase before or during test,Most likely you will pass the test.As external lactase will digest lactose in liquid;So test will be normal.
If you have any other query feel free to ask.
Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Nagamani Ng
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Follow up: Dr. Ramesh Kumar 9 minutes later
If I take the lactase before the test can it it show on pre-testing as something unusual? As they take the breath test 3 times before giving the lactose.
Thank you
doctor
Answered by Dr. Ramesh Kumar 14 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Follow up answer.

Detailed Answer:
Hi again;

As i already told you breath test detects hydrogen released from undigested lactose.
Even if you have taken lactase there is no lactose to break down,So it will not do anything.
Test is designed to detect hydrogen released from undigested lactose,It can't detect lactase.
Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Nagamani Ng
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