A double blind, randomised and placebo-controlled study investigating the effect of Lactobacillus reuteri ATCC 55730 on gastrointestinal side-effects during and after anti-Helicobacter pylori treatment.
40 dyspeptic children, aged 3-18 years, with confirmed Helicobacter pylori infection were enrolled. They were treated with 10-day sequential antibiotic treatment and randomised to receive either Lactobacillus reuteri (10^8 CFU/day, n=20) or placebo (n=20) for 20 days, starting from the first day of treatment. The severity of side-effects was measured using a validated scoring system (GSRS score).
At entry, children in both groups had similar GSRS scores (6.9 in the Lactobacillus reuteri group and 7.1 in the placebo group), but during eradication therapy and follow-up, the Lactobacillus reuteri-supplemented children significantly improved their gastrointestinal health compared to the placebo group.
On day 10 the score was 4.1 in the Lactobacillus reuteri group vs. 6.2 in the placebo group (p<0.01) and on day 20 the scores were 3.2 and 5.8, respectively (p<0.009). The rates of Helicobacter pylori eradication were the same in the two groups.
Conclusion: Lactobacillus reuteri supplementation during and after Helicobacter pylori eradication therapy significantly reduced the frequency and intensity of antibiotic-associated side-effects.