Donor Screening Experience for Fecal Microbiota Transplantation in Patients With Recurrent C. difficile Infection
To evaluate our experience with stool donor recruitment, screening, retention, and donor perception for fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT).Background:
Multiply recurrent Clostridium difficile infection is being increasingly managed with FMT from donor stools. However, donor selection and recruitment is challenging due to lack of standard evidence-based guidelines, donor exclusion criteria, frequency of screening and donor commitment.Methods:
Data on donors screened using institutional guidelines with history, blood and stool testing and their perspectives on donation were analyzed.Results:
Overall 42 potential donors (21 known and 21 standard) were prescreened. Of known donors (median age 34 y, 66.6% female), none failed prescreening, blood or stool tests. Twelve standard donors (57%) failed prescreening based on history (depression, diarrhea, autoimmune disease, recent antibiotic exposure, colon polyps, pregnancy). Nine (median age 35 y, 44.4% female) passed blood and stool testing. On repeat screening, 3 were excluded (2-positive stool shiga toxin (asymptomatic), 1-pregnancy). One donor opted out and 5 became long-term donors; 3 have donated >50 times and 2 have donated >25 times. On the basis of donor perception questionnaire, most standard donors were aware of FMT for C. difficile infection as a treatment option and would not consider 3-monthly blood and stool testing inconvenient.Conclusions:
A significant proportion of healthy individuals who volunteered to become a standard donor failed prescreening and were not subjected to blood and stool testing. Repeat testing for asymptomatic donors may be a barrier to donor retention. Universal guidelines are needed to develop strategies to facilitate donor screening.