August 7, 2014 by John Crapper
Pills made from poop
cure serious gut infections.
Doctors have discovered that putting healthy people’s poop into pills can cure serious gut infections! Canadian researches tried this on 27 patients as a less yucky way to do “fecal transplants” and cured all of them.
It’s a gross topic but a serious problem. Half a million Americans get Clostridium difficile, or C-diff, infections each year, and about 14,000 die. The germ causes nausea, cramping and diarrhea so bad it is often disabling. A very potent and pricey antibiotic can kill C-diff but also destroys good bacteria that live in the gut, leaving it more susceptible to future infections
Dr. Thomas Louie, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Calgary, devised a better way — a one-time treatment custom-made for each patient.
Donor stool, usually from a relative, is processed in the lab to take out food and extract the bacteria and clean it. It is packed into triple-coated gel capsules so they won’t dissolve until they reach the intestines.
Days before the treatment starts, patients take antibiotics to kill the C-diff. On the morning they are slated to take the pills they are given an enema so “the new bacteria coming in have a clean slate,” Louie said.
It takes 24 to 34 capsules to fit the bacteria needed for a treatment, and patients down them in one sitting. The pills make their way to the colon and seed it with the normal variety of bacteria.
The treatment now must be made fresh for each patient so the pills don’t start to dissolve at room temperature, because their water content would break down the gel coating. Minnesota doctors are testing freezing stool, which doesn’t kill the bacteria, so it could be stored and shipped anywhere a patient needed it.
Dr. Louie explained his findings at an infectious disease conference in San Francisco. All 27 patients had suffered at least four C-diff infections and relapses, but none had any recurrence of the disease after taking the poop pills.
Congratulations Dr. Louie for practicing medicine the Holy Shitters way! You are a real “Smart Shit”.