Saturday, May 7, 2016

I transplanted someone else's microbiome in(on)to my body and it was so surreal - Part II

You can follow along Here for my daily questionaire and Here there is a diary near the bottom

Tuesday Feb 16th - Antibiotics Day One, Experiment Day One
The first day I would be taking antibiotics. Didn't sleep much the night before or the night before that. Stress can induce mania in me. It doesn't take much these days to give me the adrenaline of skydiver. The strange thing is I usually have no problem falling asleep, I just end up waking up some hours later and no matter how hard I try can't go back to sleep.

The plan was to take 500mg Tetracycline and 500mg Cirpofloxacin, both broad spectrum antibiotics that target different proteins in bacteria to increase my chances of wiping out as much bacteria as possible. Tetracycline tastes like sour acrid sulfur, pretty awful. If you think the Malort face was bad the Tetracycline face is worse. I weighed out 500mg and mixed it with water and took it as a shot. I had some ciprofloxacin in pill form so it wasn't nearly as bad.

The diarrhea that came after was bad but I had expected as much. As anyone who has taken a significant dose of antibiotics before knows, you get the shits.

My chess rating on began dropping. Dahhhh, this usually happens when I am preoccupied and have a hard time focusing. It is a pretty good measure of my mental acuity. Also, because my stomach was messed up I wasn't consuming alot of calories which definitely messes with my mental acuity. In fact I only consumed 1000 calories on Feb. 16th!! Yikes. I generally need around 1800 to 2000 calories to perform well on memory tests and chess.

Wednesday Feb 17th - Antibiotics Day Two, Experiment Day Two
My stomach was pretty upset by this time I was also feeling pretty loopy. Unfortunately, it was time to go to the donor's place and pick up the samples for the transplant. I wanted them to be fresh for the transplant tomorrow. I told the donor to try and not eat anything crazy or abnormal the night before.

Fortunately, I had someone to drive me to the donor's place. By this time I was pretty out of it. The donor gave me a pretty hefty fecal sample in a plastic bag fresh from this morning. Then I made him take significant swabs of his arms, legs, mouth and nasal passages that I stored in 150mM NaCl. These would be used to inoculate my arms, legs, mouth and nasal passages. During the experiment I stored all the samples at ~4C in the fridge.

I took two doses of antibiotics today, still had diarrhea and still was having trouble eating much but better than yesterday at 1200 calories, chess score still suffering.

Because I didn't feel tired and hadn't slept much in two days I took 1mg of clonozepam to help me sleep and I accomplished an amazing 6 hours.... Usually, if I can get at least some sleep it keeps me from being manic. Mania for me is compounding, the less I sleep the more manic I become and the less I sleep. To help abate the cycle I take medication that helps me sleep. Sometimes this doesn't work and is insanely annoying

Thursday Feb 18th - Antibiotics End, Hotel Room Day One, Experiment Day Three
Still on the antibiotics but moved to the hotel room on Thursday, with my chess rating still suffering, down from 1425 before to 1393 today. The experiment has already started to become surreal but today it took it to a whole new level.

Once in the hotel room, I strip down to my boxers and put on booties, gloves and gown and start cleaning. I use disinfectant wipes and spray to clean most areas of the hotel room I would feasibly touch. I took bed sheets I purchased from amazon, still in packing and placed them over the hotel bed sheets and used pillow cases from amazon over the hotels. Anyone who entered the hotel room had to wear booties and if they planned on touching stuff, gloves. There was also a separate bed in the room that I never touched that they could sit on or lay on.

Then it was time. I went in the shower and cleaned myself and then started scrubbing myself using a sponge and antibiotics. My goal to wipe my microbiome completely off and out of my body before the transplant. For about 1 to 1.5 hours I scrubbed ever crevice and part of my body. Alot of people suggest it is impossible to remove all microbes from your body or that you would die if you did or any other number of insane hypotheses. It's possible but I didn't think likely. And though I didn't imagine I could remove every microbe I really wanted to try. Sadly, I only remembered to take microbiome samples before the cleaning and didn't really take any at all on the 19th because I was feeling so strange and out of it and just forgot.

At 1730 I took my first FMT pills and performed by first skin, mouth and nasal inoculations.

I did it again a few hours later.

I wanted the end of my antibiotics to overlap with the start of transplant so that the new bacteria had overwhelming numbers on and in my body.

I put on a white t-shirt I purchased from amazon. I put on underwear from amazon and a pair of laundered jeans while people were around. The Verge mention the laundered jeans as strange instead of just having purchased some new ones from amazon. How much different would the bacteria be on a new pair of jeans versus an old laundered pair of jeans? I don't know, maybe there would be a significant difference but I imagined not so. I also imagined not wearing pants much(I only really wore them when people came to my room).

I think in probabilities and some people think in exactitudes. What would the probability be that an old laundered pair of pants would effect the outcome versus a new pair of pants. In my opinion it was very small to none. I call it reason.

Friday Feb 19th - Hotel Room Day Two, Experiment Day Three
I ordered some take-out and chilled. I had heartburn all day but was refraining from taking an antacids because I didn't want them to mess with my gut. I actually was starting to relax and regain some of my normalcy as can be seen by my chess rating increasing and my calorie intake was also up. I enjoy staying in hotels because I don't have cable or network TV at home and it is great to watch old movies.

Saturday Feb 20th - Hotel Room Day Three, Experiment Day Four
I haven't taken a shower since he transplant started and I have been rubbing bacteria all over my body. Heartburn was getting to me and sitting in the same bed and not really leaving the hotel room was really getting to me. I was mentally and physically exhausted.

Sunday Feb 21st - Hotel Room Day Four, Experiment Day Five
I finally get to go home. When I arrived home I cleaned the apartment and put new sheets on the bed and the coverings on the couch were laundered. I rubbed my skin all over the bed and the couch to try and populate them with my new microbiome and then I took a shower.