The Poop Transplant , A Scientific Medical Procedure

The Poop Transplant , A Scientific Medical Procedure

FMT may sound like a branch of secret agents or a cool secretive world organization unfortunately it’s a medical procedure. That’s probably you’ll be surprised that this kind of procedure exists. FMT stands for Fecal Microbial Transplantation. You heard it right! it’s a poop transplant, and it’s an actual medical procedure to treat C. diff.

What is Fecal Microbial Transplantation?

Fecal Transplant is a procedure to collect feces, also called stool or poop, from a healthy donor and introduce them into a patient’s gastrointestinal tract in an attempt to help their gut flora to bounce back and repopulate after a clostridium difficile infection. There are a few procedures in how to deliver the FMT. The most common is colonoscopy is a procedure that lets your health care provider check the inside of your entire colon (large intestine) using a long, flexible tube called a colonoscope. The tube has a light and a tiny camera on one end. It is put in your rectum and moved into your colon. FMT can also be in capsule form where the patient can take it orally and swallow it or via enema. Less commonly, FMT is delivered through a tube inserted through the nose that reaches into the duodenum, the area where the stomach connects with the small intestine.

What is Clostridium difficile (C. diff.) 

As mentioned before FMT is used to treat patient infection with Clostridium difficile (C. diff.) Our digestive tract is home to many bacteria, most of which are harmless and good guys who help our digestive system. But in every Yin, there is a Yang, in every good bacteria in our digestive system there is a bad one. Clostridium difficileis the big bad guy. In certain conditions, some treatments required antibiotics to terminate bad bacteria but they also can kill off many of the good bacteria in the colon. When some of the good bacteria are gone because of antibiotics This can allow Clostridium difficile (C. diff) to take over. C. diff can cause serious inflammation in the bowel, which leads to symptoms such as abdominal pain, cramping, and diarrhea – as well as general symptoms of an infection, including fever and nausea. Dehydration is also a risk with this infection, as a lot of water is passed through diarrhea. In people over age 65 and in those with chronic illness, C. diff infection can be severe, even fatal.

FDA Approval in USA

FMT was approved by the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) for the treatment of C difficile infection in 2013. Even though FMT relatively new treatment in medicine, according to dr.Duane Mellor is a dietitian and leads for Nutrition and Evidence-Based Medicine at Aston Medical School. Fecal Transplant was first used in fourth-century China, where Ge Hong described the use of human fecal suspension by mouth for patients with food poisoning or severe diarrhea. Quoted from Johns Hopkins Medicine “Although there is great interest in other possible applications of FMT for conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease, autism, and obesity, there is no scientific evidence that fecal transplant is safe and effective for treating problems other than C. diff. Research on additional FMT uses is ongoing.

Minor Side Effect of  Fecal Microbial Transplantation

FMT is considered an easy and safe procedure, even though the side effect of Fecal Transplant comes from the delivery method of the transplant. For example, FMT via colonoscopy can be temporary side effects such as:

  • Bloating and intestinal gas
  • Cramping due to air trapped in the colon during the procedure
  • Constipation due to anti-diarrhea medication
  • Minor leaking of the transplant solution through the anus

Major Side Effect of  Fecal Microbial Transplantation

Even though the chance is slim for severe side effects of FMT but it can occur as follow :

  • Infection with another bacterium or virus from the donor stool if the donor is not adequately screened and tested.
  • Pneumonia from FMT is delivered by a tube through the nose (nasogastric tube).
  • Standard risks from a colonoscopy or endoscopy, which include infection, bleeding, tear or perforation requiring surgery, and risks of anesthesia.
  • Possible long-term adverse effects of receiving donor bacteria – whether this could increase the risk of autoimmune diseases or conditions, such as obesity in the future, are not known.


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