A probiotic mixture alleviates symptoms in irritable bowel syndrome patients: a controlled 6-month intervention
Article first published online: 26 AUG 2005
Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics
Volume 22, Issue 5, pages 387–394, September 2005
How to Cite
KAJANDER, K., HATAKKA, K., POUSSA, T., FÄRKKILÄ, M. and KORPELA, R. (2005), A probiotic mixture alleviates symptoms in irritable bowel syndrome patients: a controlled 6-month intervention. Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics, 22: 387–394. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2036.2005.02579.x
- Issue published online: 26 AUG 2005
- Article first published online: 26 AUG 2005
- Accepted for publication 21 June 2005
Background : Irritable bowel syndrome is a gastrointestinal disorder of unknown aetiology. The effect of probiotics in this syndrome remains unclear.
Aim : To investigate whether a probiotic mixture containing Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, L. rhamnosus LC705, Bifidobacterium breve Bb99 and Propionibacterium freudenreichii ssp. shermanii JS is effective in alleviating irritable bowel syndrome symptoms.
Methods : A total of 103 patients fulfilling the Rome I or II criteria took part in this 6-month, randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled trial. The patients received a probiotic capsule or a placebo capsule daily. Gastrointestinal symptoms and bowel habits were recorded.
Results : At the end the total symptom score (abdominal pain + distension + flatulence + borborygmi) was 7.7 (95% CI: −13.9 to −1.6) points lower in the probiotic group (P = 0.015). This represents a median reduction of 42% in the symptom score of the probiotic group compared with 6% in the placebo group. In individual symptoms, borborygmi was milder in the probiotic group (P = 0.008), and for the rest of the symptoms there was a non-significant trend.
Conclusions : The results indicate that this probiotic mixture is effective in alleviating irritable bowel syndrome symptoms. Considering the high prevalence of irritable bowel syndrome and the lack of effective therapies, even a slight reduction in symptoms could have positive public health consequences.