Background Multiple studies document that probiotics are effective in treating infectious diarrhoea in children. Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG is the most extensively studied but effectiveness of other strains has been poorly examined.
Aim To determine whether L. rhamnosus strains (573L/1; 573L/2; 573L/3) (Lakcid L, Biomed, Lublin, Poland) would be effective in shortening infectious diarrhoea.
Methods In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 87 children (age range: 2 months to 6 years) with infectious diarrhoea were administered Lakcid L at a dose 1.2 × 1010 CFU or placebo, twice daily, for 5 days. Primary outcome measure was the duration of diarrhoea. Secondary measures were duration of parenteral rehydration, adverse events, and gastrointestinal tract colonization by administered strains.
Results In an intention to treat analysis of 87 children, the mean duration of diarrhoea in the treated group: 84 ± 56 h; placebo: 96 ± 72 h (P = 0.36). In rotavirus infection: 76 ± 35 h vs. 115 ± 67 h (P = 0.03), respectively. Duration of parenteral rehydration: 15 ± 14 h vs. 38 ± 33 h (P = 0.006). Gut colonization by administered strains was 80% and 41% at five and 14 days, respectively. No adverse events were noted.
Conclusions Administration of L. rhamnosus strains shortens the duration of rotaviral diarrhoea in children but not of diarrhoea of any aetiology. Intervention shortens the time of intravenous rehydration.