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Blood test positive after breath test was negative

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nebulae
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:42 am

Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by nebulae » Fri Feb 10, 2012 5:03 am

I was diagnosed with H.pylori the beginning of September 2011 and was treated with the week long antibiotics. About 4 weeks later i went for a breath test to see if H.pylori was eradicated and it came back negative (no more H.pylori). However, ever since I have completed the antibiotic I continued to experience uncomfortable and sometimes very painful sensations in my stomach. The pain is different than before my treatment. Now I feel that I can eat better, but I still have my bad days where I get sore stomachs more often. They have been so bad a few times I went to the hospital but they couldn't do anything. Before the treatment the reaction was different. The reactions before treatment would consist of lots of pain in my left chest right after I eat, followed by racing heart beat, shakiness, sweating, etc. I was hardly able to eat at all and lost a lot of weight. I decided about 2 weeks ago (February 2012) to go back to the doctor and get another blood test. The blood test came back positive. I am seeing the doctor in three days to follow up with this blood test and I am worried that he will prescribe the antibiotics again because they caused my stomach to be very sensitive after the 1st treatment. I worry that, if i do receive a second line of antibiotic treatment that my stomach will be even more damaged than it is now.

Is the blood test only detecting the antibodies that my body produced from H.pylori and I therefore do not have H.pylori still (as my the breath test confirmed in October 2011)? Or, was the breath test wrong and I still have the infection?

I have my first endoscopy in 1 week and they will do a biopsy and check for H.pylori then as well. Should I wait before doing any treatment until the results of my biopsy? or go ahead if my family doctor does prescribe antibiotics in three days?

Helico_expert
Site Admin
Posts: 2414
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:20 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by Helico_expert » Fri Feb 10, 2012 7:17 am

Hi, i dont think blood test is the right tool here. as you know, the blood test detect antibodies. the antibodies of H. pylori will remain in your body for months, even years. therefore, blood test is only good to tell if you have been infected by h. pylori. it's not good to tell if you are still infected in a short period of time.

you should remind or update your doctor's knowledge in immune responses. or, maybe it's a new technology that we are untold, educate us please.

breath test or stool test are the only options after antibiotic therapy. As for the pain sensation after eradication, it's hard to explain. i dont think anyone knows why. some people took a long time to recover. but, the good news is, your breath test was negative. unless you didnt do the breath test correctly, i would trust the breath test result.

since you are going to do endoscopy, i think it's worth it. have a look if there is an unheal ulcer. ask your doctor to do a CLOtest and take a few pictures so you can seek 2nd opinion. if there is an ulcer, that explain the pain and you'll need to take long term PPI until it heals.

nebulae
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:42 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by nebulae » Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:16 pm

Thank you very much for your reply. Would you be able to explain further what a CLOtest is? Also, I am in Ontario Canada, How do I go about asking my doctor for a different opinion? If this is based in the US, how do you go about getting a different referral or opinion there on the pictures and CLOtest?

Helico_expert
Site Admin
Posts: 2414
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:20 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by Helico_expert » Fri Feb 10, 2012 4:45 pm

CLOtest is to take a biopsy from your stomach and put into a yellow color gel. if it turn red, meaning you have H. pylori.

As shown in the following picture
http://trimed.com.au/

We are actually based in Australia. you can talk to another Dr. and get their opinion about your case.

nebulae
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:42 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by nebulae » Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:38 am

Hello. Thanks for clearing it up. I just want to clarify one thing again though. Should I get the 2nd opinion of a gastroenterologist or another family doctor?

Helico_expert
Site Admin
Posts: 2414
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:20 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by Helico_expert » Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:29 am

I think it is always good to seek second opinion. Not so sure about family doctor though...

nebulae
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:42 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by nebulae » Tue Mar 13, 2012 2:51 am

I have done my Upper GI scopy a few weeks ago and i just found out that I still have H.pylori or have it again. Which is weird because i had the breath test 1 month after my first h.pylori treatment and it was negative. For the last few months i have been feeling better, although i do still get some symptoms, but they are different than before i had the first line of antibiotic treatment (1 week). Different because I am able to eat, and do not get severe pain an hour after eating. So i thought that i no longer had it. I was prescribed a 2nd line of treatment by the surgeon but i am scared to take it because the first line of treatment caused me a lot of pain. The surgeon said that it could be that h.pylori was eradicated with the 1st line of treatment but that i got it again. He said that anyone can give it to me, including my spouse. So i logically thought, well then my spouse should get checked and treated if she had it, but the surgeon said no because they do not treat anyone who does not have symptoms (which she doesn't). I do not understand this, because if she does have it and keeps giving it me, what is the point taking this 2nd line of treatment? Why should she not get checked? And she does get checked and has it, but with no symptoms, why should she not be treated? I am confused. Also, the surgeon was a surgeon for gastroenterological symptoms and not the actual gastroenterologist. My family doctor did not send me to a gastroenterologist, just the surgeon and he couldn't answer our questions that i posted in this posting to you. I would like to know, if it is recommended to take the 2nd line of treatment when I have been eating ok for the past few months. I have had a lot of discomfort from the 1st line of treatment but i have been able to go back to eating normally. Could it be that i have h.pylori because i got it from my spouse (who does not have symptoms and was never checked) but i'm not getting symptoms because she isn't (assuming she had it)? If so, would i really need to take the treatment again? Is it possible that that (h.pylori again without symptoms) could be happening to me now even though i had it before with symptoms?

Helico_expert
Site Admin
Posts: 2414
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:20 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by Helico_expert » Tue Mar 13, 2012 6:53 am

the chance of getting from spouse is low, but possible if there is a lot of close contact. I think oral-oral route. I think it is more likely that you failed your first treatment and the bacteria load was so low that it is not detectable in your followup test. I assume you did a UBT in your followup instead of blood test. never use blood test for followup as it'll always be positive.

as for your spouse, i agree that your spouse should get checkup. in fact, anyone who you have close contact to, should get check up. for example, your parents may be staying with you sharing food; or your children; or nanny; or friends. anyone who you share food and drink with.

so, if your followup test is a true positive from UBT, meaning a high reading, not a border line reading, then you should go ahead for your 2nd treatment. it will be a short period of suffering for a greater relief in the future.

nebulae
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:42 am

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by nebulae » Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:10 am

Thanks for the reply. Is ther a link where I can get info on where H.pylori survives out of the body like places it could live on or ways it can transfer. Also started my 14 day medication, thank you for your help.

Sudhi123
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2016 2:24 pm

Re: Blood test positive after breath test was negative

Post by Sudhi123 » Tue Feb 23, 2016 5:49 pm

Here, the blood test is not the appropriate option.The blood test is meant to identify anti bodies which remains permanently in your body.So the breathe test is the right way to approach towards detecting the antibodies.

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