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The Faecal Reducing Substances test is performed in a laboratory, on a sample of stool as small as 5 grams. Unfortunately this sample needs to be delivered to the laboratory as soon as possible, preferably within 1 hour. This is because lactose (or other sugars) in the stool will normally be broken down by chemical processes within 2-4 hours afetr the specimen is produced.
Faecal Reducing Substances may be ordered by your doctor for symptoms suggestive of lactose intolerance, for example frequent loose stools, particularly if they are frothy in nature. Lactose intolerance may occur after a prolonged episode of viral gastroenteritis, due to inadequate absorption of the sugar lactose by a damaged intestinal lining. Other conditions, in which other sugars, such as glucose, galactose and fructose are not absorbed properly, can also cause a positive test for reducing sugars in the stool.
Faecal Reducing Substances are reported as:
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