fecal transplantation vs. vancomycin

Authors

Researchers from Amsterdam find that fecal transplantation works better than vancomycin therapy to treat recurrent Clostridium difficile infections, which they report in The New England Journal of Medicine.

The treatment is thought to work by altering the composition of the patients’ gut microbiome. “The mechanism underlying the efficacy of donor-feces infusion is probably the reestablishment of the normal microbiota as a host defense against C. difficile.” Adding that “the fecal microbiota in patients with C. difficile infection had a reduced bacterial diversity, as compared with healthy persons, extending previous observations. Infusion of donor feces resulted in improvement in the microbial diversity, which persisted over time.”

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Pathological imbalances within the intestinal microbiota, termed dysbiosis, are often associated with chronic Clostridium difficile infections in humans. Clostridium difficile is an anaerobic, Gram-positive bacterium that is the major cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhea and a significant healthcare-associated pathogen. Clostridium difficile is a menace in hospitals and nursing homes, causing several thousands of deaths a year. Antibiotics can temporarily knock […]

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