60mL Solution Per Enema
Butyrate is a short-chain fatty acid that is synthesized in the intestine when certain carbohydrates are fermented during the digestive process. It has been studied for use in treating inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and ulcerative colitis in particular. A butyrate enema may be most effective for distal ulcerative colitis, which affects the last sections of the colon. Some practitioners have started using these enemas for treating symptoms of Crohn’s disease, although there has not been much research for this application.
How a Butyrate Enema Works
Some carbohydrates pass through the intestines without being fully digested. Instead, they are fermented by the bacteria in the colon, and give off various byproducts. Butyrate is one such byproduct which then goes on to be used as a fuel by the cells in the lining of the colon.
Butyrate has been shown to be beneficial to the cells in the intestinal tract by combating inflammation, preventing cells from becoming cancerous, reducing the effects of oxidative stress, and strengthening the colonic defenses. Butyrate enemas have been studied for use in treating ulcerative colitis. Some studies have shown that topical use in the form of an enema may help decrease the inflammation in the colon that is caused by ulcerative colitis.
Side Effects and Other Treatments
These enemas have no side effects as the compound is naturally present is the colon. Butyrate is used to treat ulcerative colitis because of its anti-inflammatory and regenerative effects. It has also been shown that butyrate increases levels of the antioxidant glutathione, which is essential for eliminating free radicals to reduce oxidative stress.
Patients who have intestinal diseases like Crohn’s have also found some benefit from the use of low dose naltrexone. LDN is a drug with few side effects that is being used for a variety of conditions and can be used in combination with these enemas.
Effect of butyrate enemas on the colonic mucosa in distal ulcerative colitis. – Gastroenterology (PubMed)
Effect of butyrate enemas on gene expression profiles and endoscopic/histopathological scores of diverted colorectal mucosa: A randomized trial. – Digestive and Liver Disease (PubMed)