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Colon Hydrotherapy And Its Clinical Applications

by Donald J. Mantell, M.D.
Professional Member AANC.
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How Constipation 'Effects' the Colon's Function

If solving the problem of constipation were merely a case of washing out loose material lying free inside any part of the colon, it would not be too great a difficulty to clear up the situation. A high enema would most likely be sufficient to take care of its removal. However, it is not so simple to dispose of this problem. Constipation involves not only the unnecessary retention of feces in the bowel, but also the retention present throughout the first half of the colon, from the cecum to the middle of the transverse colon. The cecum is found next to the ileocecal valve at the beginning of the colon.

The wall of this section of the colon is equipped with sensitive nerves and muscles whose function it is to create 'wavelike' motions, known as peristaltic waves, to propel the contents of the colon from the cecum to the rectum for eventual evacuation. This is a distance of approximately five feet.

Besides the formation of these peristaltic waves, the first half of the colon has two other very important functions. First, it must extract from all the residue coming from the small intestine any available nutritional material which the small intestine was unable to collect. For this purpose, it mulches the material which passes into it from the small intestine and transfers the liquid and other elements through its walls into the bloodstream. The nutrition which has thus been extracted from the colon is collected by the blood vessels lining the walls of the colon and is carried to the liver for processing.

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The other important function of the first half of the colon is to gather from the glands in its walls the intestinal flora needed to lubricate the colon. Far too many people, professional and laymen, think that enemas and colon irrigations wash out the intestinal flora and thus deprive the colon of a valuable means of lubrication. This school of thought is utterly false and totally devoid of truth and fact. Obviously, when the packed accumulation of feces in the bowel leads to fecal encrustation, it is not possible for the lining of the colon to function normally, and the glands in this lining cannot produce the necessary intestinal flora or lubrication. Such lack of lubrication only serves to intensify a state of constipation and to generate toxemia.

It is estimated that 200 million people are infected by intestinal parasites.

This fecal encrustation interferes with, if it does not actually prevent, the infusion of the necessary intestinal flora for colon lubrication, the formation of peristaltic waves for evacuation purposes, and the absorption and use of the additional nutritional elements present in the waste residue coming into the colon from the small intestine.

It does not require much imagination to perceive that the adhesive quality of the feces in the colon is readily susceptible to creating a coating on the inside of the lining or wall of the colon, resembling a layer of plaster in its consistency. It is equally obvious that such a coating, in preventing the normal functioning of the colon, has the insidious effect of becoming a generator of toxicity, to the detriment of health, happiness and longevity.

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When the bowel is toxic it can harbor an amazing variety of very harmful bacteria and parasites. It's interesting to note that worms outrank cancer as man's deadliest enemy on a world-wide basis. It is estimated that 200 million people are infected by these intestinal parasites.

These worms range in size from microscopic single-celled animals to twenty-foot long tapeworms! These parasites kill more people annually than does cancer. One in four people in the world today is infected by roundworms. The United States is not immune to these parasites, as the number of cases has increased in the past few years.

Other Benefits of Colon Hydrotherapy

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Colon hydrotherapy also functions as an important diagnostic tool for the physician in extracting useful information concerning digestive and clinical disorders:
  1. Is an excellent screening device for colon rectal cancer.
  2. Useful in diagnostic procedures for evaluation of the colon.
  3. May prove valuable in the preparation for bowel surgery, providing a more optimal surgical field potentially decreasing the risk of post-operative complications due to the presence of bacteria at the suture line.
  4. Offers the location and relief of fecal impactions, amount and color of mucous and the presence of increased amounts of gas.
  5. Provides detection for ova and parasites.
  6. Useful for detoxification of drug addicts and alcoholics.
  7. Provides detection for ova and parasites.
  8. Useful for detoxification

The entire colon could be cleaned and examined for occult blood every six months or as directed by the physician or health care professional for early detection of colo-rectal cancer. Benefits from colon hydrotherapy extend to all diagnostic procedures for evaluating the colon including barium enema, sigmoidoscopy and colonoscopy, facilitating a more accurate study. Patient discomfort resulting from residual barium following the enema could be avoided utilizing colon hydrotherapy. In addition, this technique would eliminate the problem of residual opaque material on subsequent upper GI series or plain film series, which would result in additional radiation exposure to the patient. Patients undergoing general anesthesia would benefit from colon hydrotherapy as it would dramatically reduce the problems associated with bowel functions following surgery.

Colon hydrotherapy may prove valuable in the preparation for bowel surgery, providing a more optimal surgical field potentially decreasing the risk of post-operative complications due to the presence of bacteria at the suture line. This procedure may be applied to all patients undergoing general or spinal anesthesia, as it would minimize the incidence of defecation in the surgical suite, while saving valuable surgical time.

Colon hydrotherapy would also by extremely useful to alcohol and drug detoxification centers as an aid in the internal cleansing process, enhancing the elimination of toxins from the colon and circulatory system.

Colon Hydrotherapy Contraindications

The contraindications of colon hydrotherapy include diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis, Chron's disease (in the acute inflammatory stages), severe hemorrhoids, or a tumor in the rectum or large intestine.


In conclusion, colon hydrotherapy is the safe, gentle infusion of purified warm water into the colon under conditions that offer safety, using no chemicals or drugs. It is the natural solution to conditions which interfere with the normal functions of the colon.

Why is colon hydrotherapy such a valuable treatment modality? A healthy colon is essential to a healthy body. Conventional diets of today comprised of refined, processed foods, high in saturated fats and low in natural fiber, contribute to the magnitude of the constipation problem. The elimination of undigested food and other waste products are as important as the proper digestion and assimilation of food stuffs. Waste material allowed to remain too long in the digestive system results in fermentation and putrefaction of these substances and subsequent proliferation of bacteria and their toxins.

Laxatives offer only temporary relief and do not address the cause of the real problem.

Colon hydrotherapy effectively removes stagnant fecal material from colon walls, preventing the build-up of these bacterial toxins in the portal and lymphatic system, resulting in a reduced load on the liver. In addition, the treatment removes mucous, gas, parasites, and cellular debris facilitating peristaltic action and better absorption of nutrients.

This natural cleansing process effectively resolves the symptoms directly and indirectly related to dysfunctions of the large intestine.

Bacteria are involved in the production of several vitamins which are absorbed by the large intestine and stored in the liver (vitamins K and some the B vitamins). In addition to vitamins, the colon absorbs large amounts of water. Unfortunately toxins of bacterial metabolism also enter the circulatory system. These toxins (Indol, Skatol, Phenol, etc.) are treated by the liver and excreted by the kidneys. Colon bacteria ferment starches releasing hydrogen and methane gasses which are absorbed and excreted through the lungs. Thus, halitosis may be a symptom of a stagnant fermenting colon. Intestinal toxemia may further result in conditions such as headaches, allergies, irritability, malnutrition and can potentially lead to an overall lowering of an individual's immunological defense mechanism.

Intestinal stasis can enhance the systemic absorption of bacteria and their toxins. The prolonged retention of food residues, bile, etc. results in increased numbers of parasitic bacteria present in the colon. Some of the colon's normal flora may become pathogenic under stagnant or putrefactive conditions. For example, streptococcus and staphylococcus, which are part of the normal flora of the large intestine under above conditions, could enter the systemic circulation and be a potential source of disease.

It is my own personal and professional opinion that colon hydrotherapy is one of the most valuable treatment modalities offered at our clinic. It may be a valuable solution by itself or in conjunction with an integrated metabolic program for a myriad of health problems.

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