Posted 7/2/2014 1:30 PM (GMT -6)
Probiotic - glad you are happy with your decision. How long ago was it that you tried the fecal transplants before going ahead with surgery?
For anyone facing this illness I can understand the desire for a solution so that you can get on with your life and why surgery looks appealing. I know I didn't want to have to keep thinking about UC, the drugs, diets etc. I just wanted it to all be done. Surgery then looked quite appealing especially when if it appears to be the only option to life without a flare, however it is not. Surgery is also irreversible and offers its own set of potential problems - many of which you can find discussed on the Ostomy forum, problems that were understated by my doctors and might be for many others too. You also don't have to drag things out with this treatment approach, you would know soon after starting whether or not it would work and you could already be symptom-free long before you would have recovered from the 2 or 3 stages of surgery.
Fecal transplants for ulcerative colitis have worked for many on this forum who have posted their stories and their methods. In their stories you can find some variation in how long it took to see noticeable results and how long they did them to ensure lasting results. However for most of them positive signs started almost immediately even if they often continued doing them for several weeks and usually in combination with drugs and diet as part of the healing process.
I know it must sound completely unbelievable to anyone who has had it drilled into their heads for many years that this is incurable and that there is no hope - it was hard for me to believe. However there are a growing number of people who have been symptom-free for years with their colons intact even after very severe cases. This is the article I first saw which gave me hope and persuaded me to delay surgery to give this alternative a shot first, if for no other reason than to have no regrets http://www.cdd.com.au/pdf/publications/paper17.pdf
Another consideration is that the best time to have surgery is not at the time when you would most desperately want it - when your body has been significantly weakened by an active flare. I came to learn that in most cases if this is not a case for emergency surgery, then it can be postponed for some length of time perhaps indefinitely. When I was preparing for surgery the surgeon actually wanted me to wait until I could get healthier first to reduce possible complications and have a faster recovery. This included having a higher red blood cell count, higher blood albumin levels, and getting off Prednisone.
The irony is that by taking the steps to get healthy for surgery, including the protein shakes the surgeon recommended so I could recover from surgery, something that my GI doctors never told me about, and also treatment for depression, I ended up getting much better. This gave me hope to where I felt I could try one last alternative before surgery. Deciding to attempt that one last alternative, even after at one point believing there was no alternative, ended up making all the difference.