Takaisin Tulosta

Probiotics for treating acute infectious diarrhea

Evidence summaries

Level of evidence: B↑

Probiotics appear to reduce the duration of infectious diarrhoea, but the size of the effect varies considerably between studies.

Weak recommendation for using an intervention:

Consider using probiotics in the treatment of acute infectious diarrhea.

A Cochrane review «»1 «Allen SJ, Martinez EG, Gregorio GV, Dans LF. Probi...»1 included 63 studies with a total of 8014 subjects comparing a specified probiotic agent with a placebo or no probiotic in people with acute diarrhoea proven or presumed to be caused by an infectious agent. 56 trials recruited infants and children (age < 18 years, n = 6489).

The most common organisms evaluated were L. casei strain GG (13 trials), S. boulardii (10 trials) and Enterococcus lactic acid bacteria (LAB) SF68 (five trials). In forty-seven trials live organisms were tested, five tested a killed probiotic preparation. The average of the effect was significant for mean duration of diarrhoea (mean difference 24.76 hours; 95% CI 15.9 to 33.6 hours; 35 trials, n=4555) diarrhoea lasting ≥ 4 days (RR 0.41; 0.32 to 0.53; 29 trials, n=2853) and stool frequency on day 2 (mean difference 0.80; 0.45 to 1.14; 20 trials, n=2751).

Comment: The quality of evidence is downgraded by inconsistency (heterogeneity in interventions and outcomes).


  1. Allen SJ, Martinez EG, Gregorio GV, Dans LF. Probiotics for treating acute infectious diarrhea. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2010;(11):CD003048 «PMID: 21069673»PubMed