An unnamed Rhode Island patient underwent the fecal matter transplant in 2011 to cure a serious bacterial infection C. difficile, which can lead to diarrhea and potentially fatal inflammation of colon. A patient gained more than 40 pounds of weight over the 36 months post-transplant. Her doctors reported that she was not able to lose the gained weight with regular exercise or diet.
The scientists are concerned with a case of a normal-weight woman becoming obese following the fecal transplant. While the doctors cited the evidence of lean mice gaining weight following fecal microbes transplant from obese mice, they are still not sure of what caused the weight gain in a woman patient.
A case report is published in the journal Open Forum Infectious Diseases and its authors are Dr. Neha Alang of Rhode Island’s Newport Hospital and Dr. Colleen Kelly of and the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.
The authors have mentioned in a report that the present case warns the consideration of non-ideal donors for fecal microbiota transplant. They also recommended selecting non-overweight donors for such transplant.
Fecal transplants have recently been accepted to treat C. difficile infections, which occurs when the natural habitants of the gut are killed by the antibiotics, replacing the gut flora with C. difficile bacteria.
Fecal transplant is done by collecting healthy donor’s fecal matter and placing it in the intestine of the recipient. The reintroduction of the good bacteria is expected to restore the natural flora of the gut.
The published case report describes that the donor was the patient’s 16-year daughter, who was normal-weight at the time of transplant. However, she gained weight later, weighing 170 patients.
Dr. Kelly said in a statement that whether there was something in the fecal transplant or good bacteria have negative impact on patient’s metabolism.