This c diff fecal transplant therapy is sometimes known as Fecal Microbiota Transplant (FMT). Because some people suffer chronic c difficile doctors are using a new therapy to dislodge the disruptive c diff from their intestine. Fecal matter from a family member is often sought so that the material entering their system is reflective of local stomach flora. This is then turned into a liquid slurry and inserted into the body to colonise the intestine.
How does it work?
For most people this introduces a new balance in the intestine and returns to the system bacteria depleted by antibiotic treatment. This bacteria would in normal circumstances would combat the c diff anyway. It is by no means clear as yet exactly how the cure takes place in specific biological terms – but the general theory that recolonizing the colon with healthy bacteria will reverse the c difficile seems to be true. Some research indicates that the reintroduction of Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes elements are part of the cure.
What is the actual procedure?
The fecal matter is inserted into the intestine in one of 3 ways. Via a duodenal tube, a rectal tube or colonoscopy. The colonoscopy is favoured as the whole of the colon can be recolonized and the extent of the infection can be clarified during the process. The cure may happen within hours or a few days.
Has the procedure been validated by the medical authorities?
This is a not a new therapy, but it has been a rare one until the recent mushrooming of c difficile infections. It has been tested via clinical trials and we link to information about those below. One of the major trials was extended to include those not receiving the therapy as it was felt to be unethical not to help them recover.
The FDA in the USA did seek to regulate the process and surround every procedure with extensive paperwork. They stepped back from this amidst a hail of protest from front-line doctors who were seeing sick people get well within days.
Does it work
Success rates of 97% have been noted and those for whom it does not work are often those with severe colitis. Overall a cure rate of 89% in 275 cases from a round the world has been noted. Initial research also suggest that a small minority who have further c diff infections have been reinfected from another source.
Who qualifies for this treatment?
This process is usually a last resort treatment. It will not be the first thing offered with your first c difficile infection. You will also need to find a facility willing to do it. Use a search engine to look for ‘fecal microbiota transplant xxxxxxxx. (Insert name of your state or city instead of xxxxxx.)
You will need to find a suitable donor, with family members preferred. You should note that their fecal matter will need to be tested and that much of the cost of the process – usually between $1500-2000 – relates to that testing. This is to ensure that they do not pass you another unhelpful infection. You should note that heavily medicated people or recent users of antibiotics will not be suitable donors. A ‘fecal donor bank’ is also creating a resource for hospitals so that can can obtain pre-screened fecal matter for use in the procedure.
Is this therapy still developing?
Work is under way to discover the essential elements of the fecal donation that heal the c diff infection. This would then be used to create pills that could bypass the need for the intrusive procedure. It is also believed that this type pf therapy could help several other conditions and research on those continues.
Recent Fecal Therapy News
- SHEA 2014 Spring Conference: CRE, CDiff high on agenda
- Treatment of last resort for C. difficile infection - Philly.com
- Systematic review: faecal microbiota transplantation therapy
- Fecal microbiota transplantation: An underutilized therapy - Healio
- MIT project provides screened fecal material for transplant. No waste goes to waste
- Fecal transplants (you read that correctly) being done to treat problem stemming from antibiotic overuse
- C. diff, fecal transplants and OpenBiome: An interview with Mark Smith - The Global Dispatch
- Fecal Transplant Rivals Antibiotics for C. difficile in Cost Model - General Surgery News
- Fecal Transplants: Treat Them Like Tissue, Not Like Drugs
- Fecal Transplant Regulations Too Strict, Some Say | LiveScience
- Therapeutic Approaches for Clostridium difficile Infections.
- Fecal microbiota transplantation: the state of the art.
- Treatment of relapsing Clostridium difficile infection using fecal microbiota transplantation.
What are the symptoms
How do I know I have it
How is it treated?
Is there a suggested C Diff diet
What is the 90% cured 'fecal transplant' therapy?
What is C Diff?
The C Diff Smell - Key Facts for You
Understanding Your C Diff Infection
How do you catch it
C Difficile Treatment
Article written by Dave Roberts.
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