Pseudomembranous colitis

Few words about Pseudomembranous colitis:

  • First we will try dissecting the name ‘Pseudomembranous colitis’. Pseudo means false, and colitis is inflammation of colon i.e. a false membrane formed along with colon inflammation – that’s the closest possible simplification I can make. This pseudomembrane can be viewed through endoscopes passed through our anus (such endoscopic  procedures are like colonoscopy and sigmoidoscopy)

  • This condition occurs as a side effect of certain antibiotics like ampicillin, clindamycin etc.

  • The condition generally causes diarrhea (can be  bloody), pain in belly and fever.

  • If this disease condition deteriorates or progresses it might cause a complication called Toxic megacolon in which colon undergoes massive dilatation, presenting with distention of abdomen and can have grave prognosis like shock, sepsis, perforation of colon and even death.

  • Generally the treatment of Pseudomembranous colitis is like an eye for an eye, mean to say it’s caused by antibiotics and also treated by antibiotics too (i.e. one antibiotic the offender and another antibiotic the defender).

  • Antibiotics like metronidazole and vancomycin are used to treat this condition. Recently studies show that transplanting feces from a healthy donor to an affected individual’s colon is more effective form of treatment than using antibiotics like vancomycin (LINK)

Endoscopic image of pseudomembranous colitis, ...

A view through endoscope inside colon

You may share your opinions below in the comments section. For all your health concerns please be guided by your healthcare provider. Please cross check information from other sources too. Reference:- 1, 2, 3