2017-07-05 15:33:11 UTC

Study Finds C. Diff Infections on the Rise, FMT Most Promising Treatment

July 5, 2017

AGA is tracking outcomes of fecal microbiota transplantation through an observational registry.

A new study published online in the Annals of Internal Medicine has uncovered a marked increase in Clostridium difficile (C. diff) infection, a recurring and potentially deadly form of a common intestinal infection that can result in diarrhea, severe gut inflammation and fatal blood infection, especially among the elderly.

The researchers from University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine found that recurring C. difficile infections increased by nearly 200 percent from 2001 to 2012. During the same 11-year period, the rate of ordinary C. diff infections grew by only about 40 percent.

In the study, the researchers highlight fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) as the most promising new treatment for recurring C. diff infections.

“While we know that fecal microbiota transplantation is generally safe and effective in the short term, we need to establish the long-term safety of this procedure,” said study author James D. Lewis, MD, MSCE, AGAF.

The AGA FMT National Registry — conducted in collaboration with the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition — will allow physicians and patients to report back on outcomes of the FMT procedure. This data will help answer critical questions about the longer-term health effects of FMT and guide future use.

Do you perform FMT? Learn more and get involved with the registry.

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