About this test
The GI Effects Gut Pathogen Profile is a useful profile to consider if you have had a recent gastrointestinal infection or a sudden change in bowel habits.
Why do the Gut Pathogen Profile?
You might choose to order this profile if you are experiencing any acute digestive symptoms. It is also a useful profile to consider if you would like to check your progress after an initial comprehensive assessment found the presence of pathogens which you have addressed.
Testing is also ideal for those who have recently traveled abroad, have been camping, had exposure to untreated water, had close contact with animals, or consumed undercooked meat or seafood.
Symptoms such as gas, bloating, nausea, abdominal pain, anal itching, and diarrhea may be a result of a parasitic, bacterial, or fungal infection.
This smaller profile is part of the larger GI Effects Comprehensive Profile, which also provides information about the microbiome, digestion, inflammation and bacterial metabolism markers.
What is being measured?
- Bacterial and mycology cultures show the presence of specific beneficial and pathogenic (bad) organisms
- Bacterial and mycology (yeast) sensitivities are provided to guide treatment options(yeast)
- Parasitology includes comprehensive testing for all parasites looking for eggs, parasites and the DNA of parasites.
- 6 PCR targets detect common protozoan parasites including Blastocystis spp. with their subtypes which can impact on symptoms.
- Add-on biomarkers are available at additional cost:
- Clostridium difficile
- Shiga toxin Escherichia coli
- Helicobacter pylori
- Macroscopic exam for worms
- KOH Preparation for yeast – additional yeast detection.
The GI Effects Gut Pathogen Profile tests via:
1. PCR Testing
The most up to date way of testing bacteria is to use a process called PCR – it means that the lab is looking at the DNA of bacteria which is more up to date than trying to culture bacteria – grow them in a petri dish. This is especially important as many bacteria are anaerobic – meaning they do not live in oxygen and therefore die soon after they have left the body. This makes culturing many bacteria impossible.
The process of culturing means that the lab checks for the presence of good, bad and imbalanced bacteria and yeasts by trying to grow them in a petri dish. If they manage to grow any bacteria or yeasts such as candida, they then treat them with pharmaceutical and natural antimicrobial agents to see which are sensitive – meaning which are reduced or killed off by the agent.
In addition, you get a Bacteria and Mycology Sensitivity panel
In the ever expanding world of microbial resistance, the sensitivity panel is a valuable tool to help inform which antimicrobial drugs or plant based antimicrobials may be most effective in addressing any imbalances and /or pathogens. In the ever expanding world of microbial resistance, the sensitivity panel is a valuable tool to help inform which antimicrobial drugs or plant based antimicrobials may be most effective in addressing any imbalances and /or pathogens.
Highly skilled lab technicians check for eggs and parasites and yeast with a microscope.
Please see the comparison table here (coming any day now) to see exactly which good and bad bacteria, yeasts and parasites are checked for on the GI effects. Or check out the sample report at the bottom of the page.
Type of specimen required for the test
1 or 3 day collection with 6 vials or tubes to complete
The lab recommends samples are collected on 3 consecutive days but if this is not possible they should be collected over a week. If this is not possible please do get in touch to discuss this.
Returning your sample
You will need to send your sample back to the lab via a next day postal service – If you are in the UK, Royal mail offers a suitable next day service. If you are outside of the UK then please check with your postal service for options. The cost of the test does not cover the return postage.
Please note that samples should only be posted on Monday – Thursday so that they do not arrive over the weekend when the lab is closed.
A courier returns option is offered by the lab and details will be included in with your test kit. This is an optional service and the cost is not included with the test fee. Details about payment, should you wish to take up this offer, are included with the courier details.
Age range this test is suitable for
Adults and children 2 years and above. The child needs to be potty trained and out of nappies. The sample must not be contaminated with urine or fibres from nappies.
Before taking this test
Refrain from taking digestive enzymes, antacids, and aspirin for two days prior to specimen collection, unless otherwise instructed by your healthcare provider
If taking antibiotics, antiparasitics, antifungals, probiotic supplements (acidophilus, etc.), or consuming food products containing beneficial flora (e.g. Activia®), it is recommended that you wait a minimum of 14 days after your last dose before beginning the test; 28 days may be preferred after antibiotics have been utilized (unless instructed otherwise by your physician). There may be times when your healthcare provider prefers that you stay on one of these agents (e.g. acidophilus) during testing in order to evaluate its effectiveness. Follow your healthcare provider’s recommendation.
Never discontinue prescription medications without consulting your healthcare provider first.
The test kit will come with full instructions.
How long does it take to get my results?
19 Working days
See a GI Effects Pathogen plus sample report here.
Smart Nutrition GI Effects Gut Pathogen Profile sample report