The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    The status of probiotics to treat functional constipation

    Functional constipation is an umbrella term covering persistent, difficult, infrequent, or seemingly incomplete defecation without a known cause.

    Researchers from The Medical University of Warsaw, in Dzialdowska, Poland reviewed the evidence in adults in children.

    First, the details.

    • 5 studies in 377 people were reviewed — 3 in adults, 2 in children.

    And, the results.

    • In adults,
      • Data suggest a favorable effect of treatment with Bifidobacterium lactis DN-173 010, Lactobacillus casei Shirota, and Escherichia coli Nissle 1917 on defecation frequency and stool consistency.
    • In children,
      • L. casei rhamnosus Lcr35, but not L. rhamnosus GG, showed a beneficial effect.

    The bottom line?

    Despite the encouraging findings, the authors concluded, “The use of probiotics for the treatment of constipation condition should be considered investigational.”

    3/16/10 20:47 JR

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