Probiotic use for infant colic 'not effective in reducing symptoms'
Researchers have claimed that the use of the probiotic L reuteri for infant colic does not reduce crying or fussing in infants nor is it effective in improving infant sleep, functioning or quality of life.
Joel Lavine, M.D., Ph.D., professor of pediatrics and chief of pediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition at Columbia University Medical Center, said the role of different intestinal microbes in producing or alleviating colic remains a subject of interest.
He said some studies have identified changes in the colonization that are associated with colic, although these changes have not been shown to be causative, and the specific kinds of bacteria potentially responsible have not been identified. Thus far, manipulation of gut colonization by probiotics remains an inexact science and conflicting evidence exists regarding the efficacy of probiotics in improving the problem.
Dr Lavine said manipulation of bacterial populations in the gut may reduce the amount of gas produced by virtue of reducing lactose malabsorption, adding that this problem of lactose malabsorption can be easily resolved by providing lactase to infants who are lacking, by way of commercially available infant drops.
The study has been published in the British Medical Journal.
(Posted on 22-04-2014)