Stool sniff test distinguishes IBD from IBS

A new method of distinguishing different types of bowel disease using the odour from patient stools could prove a reliable and cost-effective means of diagnosis, say British researchers.

The method – which combines pattern recognition software with a gas chromatograph and a metal oxide sensor – was able to distinguish inflammatory bowel disease from irritable bowel syndrome with an overall accuracy of 76%.

The system works by analysing volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from patient stools and comparing them with chemical signatures that are specific to known diseases.

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