For those suffering from a bacterial infection by Clostridium difficile (C. diff), the newest treatment involves fecal transplants.
Yes, they take the poop from a donor and purify the bacteria, using it to repopulate the patient.
For those who suffer from C. diff – and half a million Americans each year do – the nasty bacteria can only be wiped with a strong antibiotic that removes the good bacteria we humans need in our digestive system. By repopulating with good bacteria, the patient is able to recover quickly with few complications three months later.
The problem with such a transplant is, of course, the transfer of the fecal matter from the donor to the patient.
To solve that problem, Canadian scientists developed a method of placing the donor bacteria into triple-layered gel capsules for post-antibiotic repopulation.
The process still has some issues. For instance, each set of pills must be individually made for each patient. With this advancement, though, work can shift to developing a universal donor for anyone suffering from C. diff.
So next time someone tells you to eat – well, you know – they may simply be looking out for your well being.