The purpose of aH. pylori test is to detect an infection or presence of H. pylori bacteria in your stomach and upper part of your small intestine (duodenum).
Also known as the HPSA test, the stool antigen test provides the most conclusive evidence of the presence of H. pylori bacteria. The test checks to see if substances that trigger the immune system to fight a H. pylori infection (H. pylori antigens) are present in your feces (stool).
Stool antigen testing may be done to help support a diagnosis of a current H. pylori infection or to determine whether treatment for a H. pylori infection has been successful. We recommend this test after you have been treated – it produces a very accurate result of your H. pylori status.
The HPSA test is the safest and most accurate of all H. pylori tests.
A blood test checks for the presence of H. pylori antibodies, not for the bacteria itself. The biggest disadvantage of this test is quite simply;
Blood Tests cannot differentiate between a past infection and the current status of an H. pylori infection.
Even after H. pylori bacteria have been treated, H. pylori antibodies may sometimes still be present in the blood for 12 – 18 months after a successful treatment. This means that you will test positive (for antibodies) when you are actually negative after receiving treatment. In view of this, Blood Testing is considered to be the most inconclusive test that can be used to determine if a treatment has been successful or not.
If you have NEVER been treated for H. pylori a Blood test CAN be useful! If you suspect you are infected with H. pylori, and if you have never been treated for H. pylori before, and you test positive with a Blood Test – then you are extremely likely to be infected with H. pylori. Obviously, this means that you will need to start seeking effective treatment.