Why is this the Best Stool Test for GI Diagnostics?
The Comprehensive Stool Analysis assesses the critical areas of gut health: digestive function, gut inflammation, and the gut microbiome—areas affecting not only GI health, but overall health as well. For patients with symptoms that may have gastrointestinal dysfunction as their root cause, comprehensive stool diagnostics provide an effective tool for gaining clinical insight into next steps.
In addition to performing critical digestive functions, the intestinal tract contains significant amounts of organisms — the gut microbiome. Imbalances in this internal ecosystem have been associated in the scientific literature with a wide variety of common illnesses including, but not limited to:
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Celiac and Other Malabsorption Disorders
- Mood Disorders
- Skin Disorders
- Chronic Pain
- Chronic infections
Functional testing can help uncover the root cause of many chronic conditions.
The Comprehensive Digestive Analysis is designed to test the ecology and physiology of the gut. The gut is central to health and nutrition because without adequate digestion nothing gets into the system as it should. Gut health is inherent to optimal wellness. While we obviously think about the connection between overall health and specific conditions related to the gut, such as irritable bowel syndrome, colitis and Crohn’s, every health condition is impacted by the gut.
While traditional stool cultures only look for a few pathogenic gut flora, this test evaluates hundreds of different species of flora to assess the impact on intestinal health. Often, many conditions that are thought to be permanent can be corrected or greatly improved by assessing gut ecology and treating accordingly. Bacteria, yeast, and parasites that may be harbored in the gut can contribute to fatigue, gas, bloating, diarrhea and constipation. Also, infections in the gut weaken the immune system and create an environment that is more susceptible to systemic infections of all kinds. Harboring a chronic infection in the gut disrupts immune function in such a way that it can predispose us to auto-immune conditions. Infections in the gut affect our level of inflammation throughout the body. More histamine is produced in the gut than anywhere else in the system. Also, many neurotransmitters are made in the gut including serotonin and melatonin. When the gut is in disrepair our system is weakened in general.
In addition to testing gut bugs, this stool culture shows you markers for inflammation in the gut to gauge improvement of care. Markers that show how well one is absorbing are also illustrated. A number of short chain fatty acids are shown which are indicators for how strong the gut wall is. All fundamental building blocks for gut health are included in this profile.
The Complete Stool culture includes all gut bugs, measures of gut lining to assess gut permeability, as well as measures of absorption and digestive enzymes. However, each major grouping of the stool culture can be done individually as well for more specific patient needs and follow-up care.