Helicobacter pylori breath testsBMJ 2002; 324 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.324.7348.1263 (Published 25 May 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;324:1263
- Abi Berger, science editor
H pylori diagnostic breath tests rely on a simple chemical reaction which is based on the natural behaviour of the bacteria. Naturally occuring gastric urea is made up of 99% carbon isotope 12C and 1% carbon isotope 13C. The breath test uses urea enriched with 13C (that is, 99%).
Patients first drink a sachet …