Fecal transplant studied for kids with bowel disease

April 17, 2013
Fecal transplant studied for kids with bowel disease
Symptoms of ulcerative colitis disappeared for one-third of patients after process.

(HealthDay)—Fecal transplantation—an innovative enema treatment—may help reduce or eliminate symptoms of ulcerative colitis in most children and young adults, according to a small study.

The process, formally called fecal microbial transplantation, involves placing stool from a healthy donor into a recipient's in order to restore healthy bacteria.

The early clinical trial—the first in the United States to study the process in children—was conducted by a team at Helen DeVos Children's Hospital in Grand Rapids, Mich.

The study included 10 participants, aged 7 to 20 years, with mild to moderate ulcerative colitis. Enemas were used to give the patients lab-prepared from a healthy adult donor. Each patient received five such treatments within one week.

Seventy-eight percent of the patients had a reduction in ulcerative colitis symptoms within a week, and 67 percent still had reduced symptoms a month after fecal transplantation. Thirty-three percent of the patients no longer had any symptoms of ulcerative colitis after the process.

No serious side effects were noted, according to the study, which was published online and in the June print issue of the Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition.

Ulcerative colitis is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that affects the lining of the large intestine, or colon, and rectum, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Symptoms can include abdominal pain, cramping, bloody diarrhea, pus in the stool, fever, rectal pain, weight loss, nausea, vomiting, joint pain, mouth sores, skin lesions and slow growth in children.

The disease often forces children to miss school and limit their social activities.

Fecal transplantation "has been proposed as a promising new treatment option for recurrent C. difficile infection and possibly for ulcerative colitis," lead investigator and pediatric gastroenterologist Dr. Sachin Kunde said in a hospital news release.

"We believe that the procedure may restore 'abnormal' to 'normal' in patients with ulcerative colitis," Kunde said. "Our short-term study looked at the safety and tolerability of [fecal microbial transplantation] for these patients."

Larger and longer studies are needed before the process could be recommended for clinical practice, the researchers said.

As many as 700,000 Americans have , and approximately 25 percent are diagnosed during childhood, according to the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation. Kunde said fecal transplantation could offer patients a natural, inexpensive treatment option.

Explore further: Fecal microbial transplantation found to be possible treatment

More information: The U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases has more about ulcerative colitis.

Related Stories

Fecal microbial transplantation found to be possible treatment

April 5, 2013
A Spectrum Health clinical trial has found that fecal microbial transplantation (FMT) has resulted in the improvement or absence of symptoms in most pediatric patients with active ulcerative colitis.

Fecal transplant feasible for recurrent C. difficile infection

March 3, 2012
(HealthDay) -- Recurrent Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) infection (CDI) can successfully be treated in the vast majority of patients through a fecal transplantation procedure via colonoscopy, according to research published ...

Humira's approval widened to include ulcerative colitis

October 1, 2012
(HealthDay)—Humira (adalimumab) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat moderate-to-severe ulcerative colitis in adults, the agency said Friday.

Study identifies potential new class of drug for treating ulcerative colitis

August 15, 2012
An investigational drug currently under FDA review for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis has now shown positive results in patients with moderate-to-severe ulcerative colitis, according to researchers at the University ...

Recommended for you

Creation of synthetic horsepox virus could lead to more effective smallpox vaccine

January 19, 2018
UAlberta researchers created a new synthetic virus that could lead to the development of a more effective vaccine against smallpox. The discovery demonstrates how techniques based on the use of synthetic DNA can be used to ...

Study ends debate over role of steroids in treating septic shock

January 19, 2018
The results from the largest ever study of septic shock could improve treatment for critically ill patients and save health systems worldwide hundreds of millions of dollars each year.

New approach could help curtail hospitalizations due to influenza infection

January 18, 2018
More than 700,000 Americans were hospitalized due to illnesses associated with the seasonal flu during the 2014-15 flu season, according to federal estimates. A radical new approach to vaccine development at UCLA may help ...

Zika virus damages placenta, which may explain malformed babies

January 18, 2018
Though the Zika virus is widely known for a recent outbreak that caused children to be born with microencephaly, or having a small head, and other malformations, scientists have struggled to explain how the virus affects ...

Certain flu virus mutations may compensate for fitness costs of other mutations

January 18, 2018
Seasonal flu viruses continually undergo mutations that help them evade the human immune system, but some of these mutations can reduce a virus's potency. According to new research published in PLOS Pathogens, certain mutations ...

Study reveals how MRSA infection compromises lymphatic function

January 17, 2018
Infections of the skin or other soft tissues with the hard-to-treat MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) bacteria appear to permanently compromise the lymphatic system, which is crucial to immune system function. ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Lurker2358
not rated yet Apr 17, 2013
"Whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger."

Cardiologists use pig valve implants, so Gastroenterologists may as well do shit transplants, though it makes me want to gag.

I can see the doctor's instructions:

"We're now inserting the feeding tube. Try not to burb, please."

I think the reason it might not work on more than 33% might be an "anti-placebo" effect. Who would think eating shit could make them healthier?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.