Fecal transplants are effective in treatment of persistent clostridium difficile infections. The publication showing that, in the small RCT published in the PNEJM, was remarkable in the pre-screened donors who were ready and available to produce a “donation” on demand.
This new study (Youngster I, Russell GH, Pindar C, Ziv-Baran T, Sauk J, Hohmann EL. Oral, Capsulized, Frozen Fecal Microbiota Transplantation for Relapsing Clostridium difficile Infection. JAMA. 2014;312(17):1772-8.) takes poop from screened donors and freeze dries it and puts it in capsules: 70% of the small group of patients resolved their diarrhoea after a single treatment. The others almost all resolved after repeat treatment. This way of treating has the advantage of not needing a list of on-call volunteers, and not needing to pass a tube into the intestine. It has the disadvantage that if you forget, and bite down on the capsule….