With the ‘rona hogging the headlines, it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that all other forms of medical research have been put on hold for the foreseeable. Here, then, is some cheering news fresh from the pages of that indispensable if rather curiously titled organ, Annals of Internal Medicine.
I have written before about gut fermentation syndrome, a, thankfully, rare condition caused by the body producing ethanol in the gut after particularly carbohydrate-rich meal, leading to high blood alcohol levels and a feeling of having one over the eight. It is a bit of a bummer for anyone who doesn’t drink a drop.
Anyway, relief is at hand for sufferers. Researchers from University Hospital Ghent in Belgium have reported the case of a 47-year-old man who had intermittent bouts of the syndrome. A course of antimycotic drugs and a low-carb diet failed to do the trick and so the doctors suggested a faecal microbiota transplant. In layman’s terms that means transplanting someone’s faeces into his intestine.
The man’s daughter was only too happy to oblige with a stool, perhaps her kindest gift, and the symptoms of ethanol intoxication have disappeared as if by magic. 34 months later, according to the report, he is eating his normal carbohydrate-rich diet and even having the occasional sherbet.