Testing of the Small Intestine
Small Intestinal dysmotility
Small bowel manometry (antroduodenal manometry)
A test that is used to detect intestinal motility abnormalities is small bowel manometry (antroduodenal manometry). This involves placing a long tube with pressure sensors on it that passes through the stomach and into the small intestine. It is important to record several of the housekeeper wave fronts to be sure of the diagnosis. In some clinics this is done by recording for five hours or more while the patient lies on a bed in the clinic, but in other clinics, the pressure sensors are connected to a battery-operated computer and the patient is sent home to return the next day.
Upper endoscopy (EGD)
Upper endoscopy (EGD) is a test that enables the physician to look inside the duodenum (first part of the small intestine), as well as the esophagus and stomach. For the procedure a thin, flexible, lighted tube called an endoscope swallowed. The throat is numbed and often pain medicine given to help relax and tolerate the procedure. The endoscope transmits an image of the inside of the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum, so the physician can carefully examine the lining of these organs.
Small intestine bacterial overgrowth
Bacterial overgrowth is most easily detected by the hydrogen breath test: The patient drinks a sugar solution and breathes into a bag every 15 minutes for two hours. If the bacteria are present in large amounts in the small intestine, they give off hydrogen, some of which is absorbed into the blood, carried to the lungs, and breathed out where it can be detected.