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Permanent URL to this publication: http://dx.doi.org/10.5167/uzh-38685

Pohl, D; Savarino, E; Hersberger, M; Behlis, Z; Stutz, B; Goetze, O; von Eckardstein, Arnold; Fried, M; Tutuian, R (2010). Excellent agreement between genetic and hydrogen breath tests for lactase deficiency and the role of extended symptom assessment. British Journal of Nutrition, 104(6):900-907.

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Clinical manifestations of lactase (LCT) deficiency include intestinal and extra-intestinal symptoms. Lactose hydrogen breath test (H2-BT) is considered the gold standard to evaluate LCT deficiency (LD). Recently, the single-nucleotide polymorphism C/T(-13910) has been associated with LD. The objectives of the present study were to evaluate the agreement between genetic testing of LCT C/T(-13910) and lactose H2-BT, and the diagnostic value of extended symptom assessment. Of the 201 patients included in the study, 194 (139 females; mean age 38, range 17-79 years, and 55 males, mean age 38, range 18-68 years) patients with clinical suspicion of LD underwent a 3-4 h H2-BT and genetic testing for LCT C/T(-13910). Patients rated five intestinal and four extra-intestinal symptoms during the H2-BT and then at home for the following 48 h. Declaring H2-BT as the gold standard, the CC(-13910) genotype had a sensitivity of 97% and a specificity of 95% with a κ of 0.9 in diagnosing LCT deficiency. Patients with LD had more intense intestinal symptoms 4 h following the lactose challenge included in the H2-BT. We found no difference in the intensity of extra-intestinal symptoms between patients with and without LD. Symptom assessment yielded differences for intestinal symptoms abdominal pain, bloating, borborygmi and diarrhoea between 120 min and 4 h after oral lactose challenge. Extra-intestinal symptoms (dizziness, headache and myalgia) and extension of symptom assessment up to 48 h did not consistently show different results. In conclusion, genetic testing has an excellent agreement with the standard lactose H2-BT, and it may replace breath testing for the diagnosis of LD. Extended symptom scores and assessment of extra-intestinal symptoms have limited diagnostic value in the evaluation of LD.


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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic and Policlinic for Internal Medicine
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Children's Hospital Zurich > Medical Clinic
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of Clinical Chemistry
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
540 Chemistry
Deposited On:20 Jan 2011 12:42
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 14:25
Publisher:Cambridge University Press
Additional Information:Copyright © The Authors 2010
Publisher DOI:10.1017/S0007114510001297
PubMed ID:20398434

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