Clinical Report: Probiotics and Prebiotics in Pediatrics

An Expert Interview With Dan W. Thomas, MD

Dan W. Thomas, MD


January 31, 2011

In This Article

Recommendations for Use of Probiotics

Medscape: While the report makes clear that human milk is the preferred food for infants, what would you suggest primary care providers advise parents who choose to bottle-feed? Should infant formula supplemented with probiotics be recommended?

Dr. Thomas: No one can answer this question at this time. The health benefits of feeding infant formula containing probiotics and/or prebiotics are unproven. In essence, this report challenges industry and healthcare researchers to conduct high-quality, evidence-based studies to answer these questions.

Medscape: And what about advice to parents of older children who would like to give probiotics to their child?

Dr. Thomas: Outside of the specific situations outlined in this report where there is evidence of benefit, the answer to this question, too, is relatively unknown and will have to await further research.


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