Incomplete intestinal absorption of fructose might lead to abdominal complaints such as pain, flatulence and diarrhoea. Whether defect fructose transporters such as GLUT5 or GLUT2 are involved in the pathogenesis of fructose malabsorption is a matter of debate. The hydrogen production by colonic bacteria is used for diagnosis with the hydrogen breath test. However, the appropriate fructose test dose for correct diagnosis is unclear. Subjects with fructose malabsorption show increased breath hydrogen levels and abdominal symptoms after fructose administration but do not report any symptoms when fructose is given together with glucose. This beneficial effect of glucose, however, cannot be explained yet but might be used for clinical care of these subjects.
Keywords: Fructose malabsorption; GLUTs; Glucose transporters; Hydrogen breath test.