Diagnostic Tests

Urea Breath Test


Urea Breath Test

Also known as Helicobacter Pylori Urea Breath
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What is this test?

This test is used to find out the presence of the active Helicobacter Pylori infection in the suspected individual body.

What is H.Pylori?

Helicobacter Pylori H. Pylori is a spiral-shaped bacteria and attack the lining of the stomach. Due to its spiral shape, it penetrates into the stomach and gets protected by the mucus. Hence, immune cells are not able to reach them. This bacteria cause serious stomach problems like peptic ulcer, gastritis and most of the stomach ulcers.

Why this test is performed?

This test is performed to check the presence of H.Pylori infection in the body. The doctor may ask you to undergo this test if you are suffering from conditions such as peptic ulcer, gastritis etc. If symptoms like burning sensation in abdominal pain during the night or after few hours of having food, intestinal bleeding, tenderness, excessive burping, lack of appetite, unexplained weight loss, blood in stools, trouble in swallowing, anemia etc. are seen in an individual, then the doctor may recommend doing this test. If an individual is on the treatment of medications like clarithromycin, omeprazole, amoxicillin, then the doctor may ask to perform this test to evaluate and to check the effectiveness of the treatment. Sometimes this test is done along with other H.Pylori tests to confirm the diagnosis.

Generally, this test should be done after 4 weeks of completing the treatment for H.Pylori infection to check the treatment results.

The urea breath test UBT involves a special substance that contains urea which is made from harmless radioactive. In this test, a solution or capsule containing the radioactive urea is given to drink or to take. After drinking or consuming the solution or capsule, you will be asked to breathe into a special ballon bag at certain times over a period of 1 hour for every 10-20 minutes. The air you breathe into the bag is collected and used to analyze for the signs of H.Pylori infection. H.Pylori make urea which in turn create ammonia and bicarbonates. Traces of these can be found in your breath.


Medications such as antibiotics, bismuth, proton-pump inhibitors may change the test results and hence you are advised to inform all your current medications to the doctor prior to the test.

Also known as H.pylori Urea Breath, H Pylori Breath Test, Breath Test Helicobacter Pylori.

Test Preparation

Inform your doctor if you are on any medications, have any allergies or underlying medical conditions before your Urea Breath Test. Your doctor will give specific instructions depending on your condition on how to prepare for Urea Breath Test.

This test is done after you fast (without eating anything) for 1 hour before the test. You need to stop using antibiotics, bismuth medicines, and proton-pump inhibitors 2 weeks before the test.

Understanding your test results

If the test results are negative it may indicate that H.Pylori infection is not present in the body.

If the test results are positive it may indicate that H.Pylori infection is still present in the body.

Sometimes a false positive may occur if the test is done immediately after the treatment.

GenderAge groupsValue
UNISEXAll age groupsIn the absence of any infection, H-pylori does not produce CO2 in the stomach
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