Old Study – Parasitic worms may offer effective treatment for Crohn’s disease [14Dec04]

I can’t believe this study was done back in 2004. Seriously folks, why isn’t this mainstream yet?

Amplify’d from www.medicalnewstoday.com
Parasitic worms, or helminths, may be an effective treatment for the chronic inflammatory bowel disorder, Crohn’s
disease, suggests a small study in Gut.
Helminths, such as roundworms and threadworms, are rare in developed countries, where rates of Crohn’s disease are high. But
in developing countries where corresponding rates of the disease are low, many people carry these parasitic worms.
Every three weeks, 29 adults with moderately active Crohn’s disease swallowed 2500 whipworm eggs of the species Trichuris
suis, commonly found in pigs. The eggs were disguised in a commercial drink. The volunteers repeated this exercise for a
period of 24 weeks in total.
They kept daily diaries of their symptoms and were monitored every three weeks at the clinic.
Most of the patients had had their symptoms for around 4 years, and standard treatment had not worked.
Four of the patients had to withdraw before the half-way mark, and a further patient stopped the treatment when she became
pregnant. But none of them had got any worse.
By week 12, 22 patients experienced a significant improvement in symptom score, and 19 patients had no symptoms at all. By
week 24 the respective numbers had climbed to 23 and 21.
This translates into a response rate of 80% and a remission rate of 73%, say the authors. There was no indication that the
helminth treatment had worsened symptoms and there were no side effects. But patients taking drugs to suppress the immune
system at the same time tended to fare betterRead more at www.medicalnewstoday.com