I started with the Fecal Transplants /Human Probiotic Infusions / Bacterial Therapy to treat Ulcerative Colitis last Sunday night June 12, so that would make today day 7. A quick note is that there are many names for the simple process of taking fresh stool, mixing it with salt water and then infusing it using an enema for the purpose of treating Ulcerative Colitis or Crohn’s Disease or lesser infections of the large or small intestine that are recurrent and otherwise unresponsive to anti-biotics.
So far everything has been going pretty well and is getting smoother over time as I get used to the process. For the mixture of fecal matter and sterile saline solution I ended up deciding to make my own sterile saline by boiling a quart of distilled water with a packet of pharmaceutical grade salt sold for use in a saline nasal rinse or neti pot. I did this because I could not buy a large bottle of sterile saline without a prescription. I am convinced this must be a racket to protect sales of sterile saline in small expensive batches for contact lenses and nasal rinses, because it is exactly the same concentration of saline in water. Even with a prescription a bigger bottle of salt water should not cost $5. I argued with the Pharmacist at CVS even as I realized the futility. “It’s just clean water and about a table spoon of salt!” But I digress … After the first 2 days I got tired of boiling the water, it’s distilled water and I am mixing it with stool, so I’m sure it’s clean enough. Although others would advise that it come from a pharmacy or be boiled first for 10 minutes.
I haven’t used a blender in a long time and I did not put the base on the blender when I assembled it. Opps, this caused a big mess when I poured in the saline water mixture on top of the stool in the blender. However I didn’t notice the smell because of the chronic sinusitis I have had for years and I got over any squeamishness long ago because of my experiences with Ulcerative Colitis.
Fortunately there was still enough source material to work with for the infusion. I poured it out of the blender into a Glad Ware container and then used an anal syringe ($10 at CVS) to suck up the solution by squeezing the bulb. Then I attached the tip and used a little KY jelly to lubricate the tip. It’s good to know that I have these things laying around my place, although that was not my original intent that I bought it for Then I laid on my side on the edge of the bed after covering it and two pillows to put under my hips with a garbage bag and a towel and I was ready for business.
Inserting the tip was no problem, it was about the width of a pen. The bulb took a little getting used to at first as it took some pressure to squeeze it. I found that if nothing would come out I could just twist the bulb and tip or pull it out slightly and then it would start to work again. The contents of the bulb went in pretty quickly within a minute or two and I put the empty bulb in a plastic bag by the side of the bed and then used the balance of my time to catch up on phone calls, text messages, Facebook and then posting this blog entry.
At day 7 I am doing pretty well, no visible blood in stool, still relatively frequent diarrhea which has alternated with loose stool that was a greyish color. There was a lot of gas the first 2 -3 days. I don’t notice this as much now that I am taking generic Gas X (Simethicone) to combat this. I think the gas is a result of new bacteria that is colonizing the colon and the reaction where the new bacteria is killing off some of the old bacteria.
Day 2 I woke up early at 6 am on about 4 hours sleep went out to Silver Diner for a nice big breakfast and coffee, but then ended up taking a nap around 9 am for 4 or 5 hours. I felt wiped out, although I had been told to expect this so I was not alarmed. I guess this is related to trillions of new bacteria coming in to take over. Otherwise this has been a process of getting used to new things.
Feel free to contact me with any questions, comments or concerns. It still seems amazing to me that something with so much potential to heal what doctors told me was an incurable condition can be so simple to learn to do.
Fortunately I have also had some experiences with enemas before, Mesalamine enemas as part of my treatment for Ulcerative Colitis.
Thank you once again to Sky Curtis, creator of some helpful guidebooks for Fecal Infusions / Transplants and author of the soon to be published book Gut Reaction, a story about the process she used to cure her son’s Crohn’s Colitis. Sky gave me some excellent advice and about how to do this procedure and the assurance that it does work, and that Crohn’s and Colitis is a curable condition even if it might take some time. Thank to this blogger who has shared his Fecal Bacterialtherapy experiences in a series of detailed blog posts.
Also a big thank you to my donor, an open-minded friend willing to do what some people seem to think this is kind of weird.
I’m confident it will work and am encouraged by early results. While these may not sound too pleasant, keep in mind that my alternative was to have 2 different surgeries, a full Colostomy with an Illeal Pouch for at least 3 – 6 months followed by a 2nd surgery to have a reconstructive J pouch. Even then I was still going to have to go to the bathroom 5 – 6 times a day. So even if this process takes 3 -4 months of infusions to be completely effective it will be worth it.