Antibiotics are thought to disrupt the balance and diversity of the gut microbiome by eliminating not only the harmful, pathogenic bacteria but also some of the resident beneficial bacteria.1, 2 This often results in diarrhea, known as antibiotic-associated diarrhea (AAD). Clinical studies have shown that supplementation with a blend of the Lactobacillus acidophilus, LA-5® and Bifidobacterium, BB-12® probiotic strains (hereafter referred to by use of the trademarks LA-5® and BB-12®) may be effective at reducing the duration and severity of AAD.3, 4
Consuming a specific blend of two probiotic strains is associated with fewer and shorter cases of antibiotic-associated diarrhea
Antibiotics frequently affect the digestive system
AAD can occur not only while taking a course of antibiotics but also for up to eight weeks after the course of antibiotics has finished. Symptoms of AAD typically include frequent episodes of loose and watery bowel movements, and crampy abdominal pain.9, 10
AAD is a benign and self-limiting diarrhea that may occur with the use of antibiotics.5, 6
Probiotics may help restore balance to the microbiome, reducing the risk of AADThe BB-12® and LA-5® probiotic strains have been investigated in clinical studies and have been associated with reducing the duration of AAD.3, 4 The two probiotic strains are thought to bring about beneficial effects by producing substances that are toxic for harmful bacteria.11, 12, 13 The BB-12® and LA-5® probiotic strains also help improve the immune system by strengthening our immune response,14, 15 better enabling the body to combat new viral and bacterial infections.
BB-12® and LA-5® probiotic strains may reduce the duration of AAD
A high-quality clinical study investigated the effectiveness of the LA-5® and BB-12® probiotic strains at reducing the risk and severity of AAD.3 All participants were given a seven-day course of an oral antibiotic. On the same day that the antibiotics course started, half of the participants were given a placebo and the other half were given a blend of the LA-5® and BB-12® probiotic strains. Participants continued with the placebo or probiotic blend for a further seven days after the course of antibiotics was completed.3
Only 10.8% of the probiotic group experienced AAD, compared to 15.6% of the placebo group. Further, the duration of the AAD was significantly shorter in the probiotic group (two days) compared to the group who took a placebo (four days).3
Of those participants who did experience AAD, severe diarrhea occurred in 96% of the placebo group, compared to just 31.6% of the probiotics group.3
Antibiotics disrupt the balance of bacteria in the gut microbiome, often resulting in AAD.1
Ask your doctor about probiotics when being treated with antibiotics
To read more about Chr. Hansen probiotic strains and reducing the risk of diarrhea in children, click here.
CFU: Colony Forming Unit
BB-12® and LA-5® are trademarks of Chr. Hansen A/S.
The article is provided for informational purposes regarding probiotics and is not meant to suggest that any substance referenced in the article is intended to diagnose, cure, mitigate, treat, or prevent any disease.
The probiotic strain Bifidobacterium, BB-12® is the world’s most documented probiotic bifidobacterium. It has been extensively studied and has been associated with improved outcomes across various health areas.
BB-12® is a registered trademark of Chr. Hansen A/S
The probiotic strain Lactobacillus acidophilus, LA-5® has demonstrated benefits, for example, in gastrointestinal health when used in combination with Bifidobacterium, BB-12®.
LA-5® and BB-12® are trademarks of Chr. Hansen A/S
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