Updated: 05/08/2014 01:07

Doctors show that poop can save lives



Doctors show that poop can save lives

A team of doctors from the National University Hospital have demonstrated that poop can save lives. 

They've successfully transplanted micro-organisms from a healthy donor's faeces, into the digestive tract of two patients suffering from C.diff infection. 

The infection is often caused by long-term antibiotic use, and sometimes can be deadly. 

The patients had been having diarrhoea a dozen times a day, but the transplant wiped out the infection in two days. 

Dr David Ong, who led the transplantation team talked about the process. 

"Most people would associate stools with something that we flush away, that it's dirty and smelly. But I think in this case, I think we're more interested in the microbes in the stool. It has what I would call "therapootic" power.

Last year, an evidence-based study showed the transplant led to a 90 per cent success rate for patients with C.diff infection. 

The team's also exploring the use of the technique for those with irritable bowel syndrome, or inflammatory bowel disease. 

The practice of using processed faecal matter to treat diarrhoea-related ailments is not new. 

It was used hundreds of years ago in China, where it was called "yellow soup". 

But due to the "yuck factor", this never really caught on.

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