. 1988 Jul; 95(1):223-31.
doi: 10.1016/0016-5085(88)90318-6.

D-xylose testing: a review

R M Craig 1 A J Atkinson  
  • PMID: 3286361
  •     32 citations


The efficacy of D-xylose testing in clinical situations has been reviewed in the light of recent kinetic studies. The standard 25-g D-xylose test in adults, based on analysis of 5-h urine collection and a 1-h serum sample, discriminates between normal subjects and patients with proximal small intestinal malabsorption with greater than 95% specificity and sensitivity. The 1-h serum level measured after administering this dose is also useful in evaluating malabsorption in patients with intermediate degrees of renal insufficiency and in the elderly. The 1-h serum test after administration of 5 g of D-xylose should be used in pediatrics and is greater than 91% sensitive and close to 100% specific. The [14C]D-xylose breath test with 1 g of D-xylose has been useful in identifying malabsorption caused by bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine.

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