Saturday, April 7, 2012

Fecal Transplants or (To Poo or not to Poo!)

     I am going to warn my readers right now.  If you are eating or have eaten within the last hour or so hold off on reading this.  I'm serious.  Finish your lunch and come back in an hour.
Ok, the reason for my warnings are as follows.  Today's blog is about Feces.  Yes, aka poop, aka doo doo, aka $h1t aka crap, aka movies by Uwe Boll.  I'm not talking about just pooping in general, but how poop can be used to heal.  I would not joke about something this serious.  If you or someone you know suffer from C. Difficile should read this PDF.

    What is C. Difficile? or (What's the C. Diff?)
High five?

I'm glad you asked otherwise I'd just explain anyway without an inquisitive segue.  C. Difficile is an infection that lives in pooop and can cause diarrhea or in the worst case inflammation of the colon.  The word inflammation and colon should never ever be used in the same sentence.  This can actually be life threatening.  The most often used treatment is antibiotics.  Antibiotics are good at killing off infections.  Many life threatening ailments have been treated with antibiotics.  What's the problem?  The antibiotics kill off the good bacteria as well.  Good bacteria helps you break down foods that you can't digest on your own.  For example, beans.  We can't digest them that well.  So the bacteria eat the parts we can't break down and they burp.  This causes gas.  Neat huh?  Where are you going?  I warned you about eating lunch while reading this.
     You can also just boost the probiotics in some cases.  Giving your feces a healthy dose of good bacteria can help fight off the bad guys.  This is why the yogurt industry have been advertising the benefits of a good long poo.
    If the inflammation is so bad and it's too late for probiotics or antibiotics, it's time for surgery.  The only thing to do now is to remove part of the colon.  Holy crap!  That does not sound like fun.  I mean, I don't even want to imagine what that's like.

"You did that all by yourself?  Good, here's a lollipop."
   Luckily there are alternatives.  Like replacing your infected poo with good poo.  That's right, I'm talking about a Fecal transplant.  This is one of those ideas that sounds so crazy that it might just work.  And it does.  A canadian man (for some reason doesn't want his name published) was due for the procedure.  Since this was an uncommon thing there was a lot of red tape to go through to get it approved.  It apparently took too long because the patient said "Screw this, I'm just going to do it my dang self."   His doctor of course was shocked that his patient had already done the procedure but then  probably relieved that he didn't have to do it.
     I think this is a good idea.  Yes, it seems strange but it does have a 90% success rate.  90%!  The fact that someone did this at home without a doctor and it still worked just goes to show that there's more to this idea.  How else are we supposed to learn new things or make new discoveries if we aren't willing to try new things?  What if Alexander Fleming decided to just throw out that moldy sandwich? I know this is a semi serious blog but seriously.  Why would their be any red tape at all?  The conversation should have gone like this.
Doctor:  With my years of experience and medical training I believe this is the best course of action.  Yes, the patient understands what we are doing and even signed the waiver.
Medical Director:  Ok, how does this afternoon sound?
Doctor:  Uh, I think I'd like to do this before lunch.
    Then the doctor would begin to literally doctor the shit right out of his patient.  Pun intended.

What do you think?  Does it seem like hospitals are too concerned with lawsuits and protecting their own behinds rather than patients?  Do you think this just slows our progress?  Isn't progress built on making the occasional mistake?



References:  
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/c-difficile/DS00736
http://thechronicleherald.ca/novascotia/80530-cb-man-performs-fecal-transplant-himself

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