Ever heard of poop transplants?! I know what your thinking…why on earth would you pay to put someone else’s poop into your own body?! It sounds really really disgusting. According to gastroenterologists, placing healthy feces inside the intestinal tract helps cultivate healthy bacteria. It’s not easy to be a paid pooper, though. You have to be VERY healthy and have no track record of IBS or any other kinds of stomach troubles. It has been proven to help ulcerative colitis, which is a condition if inflamed bowels and causes long-term ulcers in the digestive track. No fun!
After carrying out the transplants on a group of patients, researchers at the University of New South Wales in Australia, found marked improvement in their symptoms.
One in four patients who were resistant or intolerant to conventional treatment – steroid or anti-inflammatories – reported their symptoms had disappeared and showed signs that their digestive tracts improved.
Furthermore, more than half of patients reported an improvement in their symptoms after undergoing fecal transplant.
Dr Sudarshan Paramsothy, a gastroenterologist at the University of New South Wales, said: ‘In recent years, researchers have gained a better understanding of the gut microbiota, and the critical role it plays in health and disease, including conditions like ulcerative colitis.
‘By using fecal microbiota transplantation, we aim to treat the underlying cause of ulcerative colitis instead of just its symptoms, as opposed to the majority of therapies currently available.’
Dr Paramsothy and his team enrolled 81 patients across three Australian study sites.
Forty one received fecal transplant treatment, while the remaining 40 received a placebo, or non-active treatment.
Patients received the first transplant or placebo through a colonoscope.
Subsequently, patients were given enemas that were self-administered five days per week for the next eight weeks.
After that time, more than three times as many patients who underwent fecal transplants, responded to their treatment than the control group.
Specifically, 11 of the 41 fecal transplant patients (27 per cent) achieved the study’s primary goals – to report no symptoms and for doctor’s to see substantial improvement and healing in the digestive tract.
Only three of the 40 patients (eight per cent) in the control group reached this goal.
When researchers looked at just the number of patients reporting being symptom-free they found 44 per cent of fecal transplant patients reported improvement compared with 20 per cent in the control group.
Dr Paramsothy said: ‘Previous research in this area has been limited to small case series and two single center trials with conflicting outcomes.
People all over the world are looking for help to treat this disease. It is wonderful that someone has finally found something that helps. Stomach pain can be exhausting, when your stomach is digesting food incorrectly your entire body is thrown out of whack, it can make you tired, sick, and malnutritioned, to say the least.