To Scope or Not to Scope
Aside from negatively impacting the quality of life, IBS is relatively benign. It does not lead to any permanent structural damage to the intestines. Dietary and lifestyle changes can usually alleviate the symptoms of this disorder2. IBD on the other hand is characterized by intestinal inflammation or ulcerations. This organic disease can lead to serious complications including the development of fistulas, abscesses and strictures; sometimes leading to perforation of the bowel3. This disease also carries an increased risk of malignancy4. Diagnosing IBD typically involves endoscopy and medical imaging which is expensive, invasive and difficult to conduct, especially on young patients.
Helping You Diagnose and Monitor IBD
Fecal Calprotectin can be used to confirm the presence of inflammation in the intestines before doing invasive testing5. Fecal Calprotectin is detected by an FDA-approved immunoassay that offers a noninvasive way to assess the patient’s level of intestinal inflammation. Calprotectin is a calcium-binding protein found within neutrophils which influx into the bowel during inflammation. The levels of the Fecal Calprotectin protein are high in cases of IBD but not IBS; therefore, this test helps differentiate between the two diseases. While Fecal Calprotectin is not a substitute for other diagnostic techniques, it could help identify the patients who are most likely affected by IBD5.