Fecal Transplants: a New Treatment for IBD

Linda Ann Sasser has had ulcerative colitis since she was 20, but it wasn’t until May 2019, about 30 years later, that her condition hit a low point: not only did she have a major flare-up of chronic inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), but on top of it, she had Clostridioides difficile (or C. diff), a highly contagious bacterial infection that causes severe diarrhea and inflammation of the colon. “I became really, really sick with bloody diarrhea 30 times a day and chronic stomach pain,” Sasser says. While hospitalized for 12 days, she was given oral steroid medications, which didn’t help, then IV steroid medications, which gradually improved her ulcerative colitis flare-up. The next challenge was to treat the C. diff infection. The doctors tried antibiotics, which didn’t get the job done; Sasser’s abdominal pain was incessant, and the diarrhea would come on so suddenly that she often couldn’t get to the bathroom in time. “I was at the point where I said, ‘Just take out my colon,’” she recalls. Her doctor told her about another treatment that might help: fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT), which is exactly what it sounds like: fecal matter (as in: stool) from a healthy donor is transplanted into the body of someone like Sasser in the hope that it will improve her health. [time-brightcove not-tgx=”true”] Sasser didn’t hesitate to opt in, because nothing else had worked for her, so she had FMT...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized Disease feature Source Type: news

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