Probiotics Ease Childhood Diarrhea

May 30, 2002

HVIDOVRE, Denmark - A new study shows "good bacteria" may help children recover from bouts of diarrhea.

Researchers at the University Clinic of Pediatrics in Denmark gave children with diarrhea a supplement containing two different strains of lactobacillus.The bacteria, which are commonly found in yogurt, were shown to ease diarrhea and reduce hospital stays. Studying 69 children age 6 months to 3 years old, the researchers gave the supplement to 50 percent of the group. The others received a placebo.

The supplement contained lactobacillus rhamnosus and lactobacillus reuteri. It was given twice a day for 5 days.

The children who were given the "good bacteria" reportedly recovered in 1.7 days, in comparison to the placebo group that spent 3.5 days in the hospital. The supplement group also had fewer signs of rotavirus infection - the leading cause of diarrhea in children.

The researchers concluded probiotic treatment can help children in early stages of diarrhea.

Information from www.reuters.com