Which medications in the drug class Probiotics are used in the treatment of Necrotizing Enterocolitis?

Updated: Dec 27, 2017
  • Author: Shelley C Springer, JD, MD, MSc, MBA, FAAP; Chief Editor: Muhammad Aslam, MD  more...
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Answer

Probiotics

A meta-analysis of published studies showed that oral administration of nonpathogenic bacterial species may result in beneficial alteration of intestinal bacterial flora, reducing the risk and severity of disease. [62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70] However, data are insufficient regarding the optimal time of initiation, type and dose of bacteria to be used, duration of administration, and potential adverse effects.

Some probiotic formulations used in these studies are not available in the United States, and no regimen or available preparation can be issued based on the meta-analysis. Because of these unknown factors, this therapy is experimental and is not accepted as a standard of care.

Lactobacillus acidophilus/Bifidobacterium infantis (Floranex, Bacid, Dofus, Culturelle)

These lactic acid–producing organisms are thought to acidify the intestinal contents and to prevent selective bacterial growth. Probiotic live cultures are intended to restore or maintain healthy microbial flora. Data are currently emerging regarding their use in NEC. Various products are available and doses may vary between products. Infloran has specifically been studied in very low birth weight (VLBW) infants with NEC. It has completed phase II clinical trials.


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