Lactose malabsorption and intolerance in Italians
- Cite this article as:
- Bozzani, A., Penagini, R., Velio, P. et al. Digest Dis Sci (1986) 31: 1313. doi:10.1007/BF01299809
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Lactose malabsorption was assessed by the hydrogen breath test in 40 Italian patients with irritable bowel syndrome and 42 controls without abdominal disturbances. Sixty-five percent of patients were “low milk consumers” (0–250 ml milk per day) compared with 38% of controls (P<0.02). Lactose loads of 25 and 50 g caused malabsorption in 82.5 and 87.5% patients and in 55 and 62% controls, respectively (patients vs controlsP<0.02). Malabsorption was more frequent in the “low milk consumers” group (P<0.05). During a four-month lactose-free diet as the only treatment 7.5% of patients became symptomfree (and remained so for a further eight-month diet), 52.5% improved, and 40% showed no change.