Balancing the body’s bacteria

Dr. Tom Louie, MD

Clostidium difficile is painful hospital infection that causes severe fever and prolonged diarrhea, which can lead to blood poisoning and death. Treatment has greatly improved thanks to Dr. Louie's groundbreaking work. He's a pioneer in the use of fecal transplants to put the body’s bacteria back into balance to cure the infection. He also created a pill treatment that eliminates the uncomfortable process of transplanting feces into intestines.

Advancing knowledge of the body’s bacterial balance can lead to great changes. For example, clinical trials are proving that a probiotic pill given to at-risk adults admitted into the hospital can prevent nearly 75 percent from contracting C. difficile. Our study of the microbiome in Calgary patients taking probiotics is helping advance our knowledge of how to balance bacteria in the body.