Fecal Microbiota Transplant (FMT)

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Important! This exam requires that you have an empty stomach. Stop drinking all fluids (including clear liquids and water) 4 hrs before the exam (minimal sips are allowed only to take your usual medications). Avoid gum and hard candy.

What is it and why do I need it?

FMT or fecal transplant is a procedure that transfers stool from one person (a donor) to the patient’s colon. The healthy bacteria in the donor’s stool then helps repopulate the patient’s intestinal bacteria with the hope of restoring colon health.  The procedure involves obtaining donor stool and the patient undergoing a colonoscopy.  Please make sure you have reviewed the colonoscopy instructions including the bowel cleansing prep.

Currently, FMT is approved for the treatment of refractory C-difficile infection. In the future, it may be used to treat a variety of other illnesses and diseases. 

The risks  

Please refer to the colonoscopy risks. The risks of FMT include the standard risks of colonoscopy such as bleeding, infection, perforation and cardiopulmonary problems. Although the donor stool is thoroughly screened for infections, there remains a small risk of acquiring an infection or a disease from the donor. 

The preparation  

Please refer to the colonoscopy instructions. You will need to cleanse your colon as if you were undergoing a standard colonoscopy. Please follow the colonoscopy instructions carefully.  You will be sedated for the procedure so you will need someone to drive you home. Standard Colonoscopy Prep for FMT.

The procedure    

Please refer to the colonoscopy instructions.  The physician performing the colonoscopy will infuse the liquefied donor’s stool into the end of the small intestine or the beginning of the colon. The entire procedure usually lasts about 20-30 minutes.

After the procedure 

Please refer to the colonoscopy instructions. 
When you return home, you should consume only a liquid diet for 24 hrs.
You may not drive, make important decisions or operate machinery the rest of the day.  You must have someone at least 18 yrs old with you during the entire time from check-in through recovery and to drive you home after the exam (a taxi or bus is not an option).