I wanted to pass on a summary of an article that was posted on medscape this week. It highlights that there is some encouraging research looking at probiotics and colic. There is so much going on in the world of probiotics and gut microbes! I’m going to a research talk on Friday about pediatric gut microbiotia and I will post the highlights!
Jordi Cuñé, Jonathan Santas. Infant Colic: Is a Solution at Hand? Medscape. Mar 19, 2014.http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/822073
(please go to medscape link to read full article, you will need to register with medscape to read it).
Infant colic may be referred to as excessive crying syndrome. There is a lack of agreement on the diagnostic criteria for colic in infants. A definition of colic is needed and will most likely include time criteria, parental perception, and infant characteristics.
Interventions can include:
- Drug therapies: Simethicone , dicyclomine hydrochloride and cimetropium bromide
- “Natural” treatments: plant extracts (ie, Matricaria chamomilla [chamomile], Foeniculum vulgare [fennel], Melissa officinalis [lemon balm], and Mentha piperita [peppermint oil])
- Nutritional interventions (based on theory that infantile colic can result from food allergies or digestion problems): partially hydrolyzed whey proteins formulas, Lactase therapy, High-fiber or fiber-enriched formulas
- Complementary therapies: massage or chiropractic treatment
Probiotics have been proposed as a promising alternative for modulating gut microbiota, improving health, and improving crying.
- 2013 study: microbial DNA in 12 infants with colic found that colicky infants displayed a less diverse and altered intestinal microbiota compared with healthy control infants
- 2013 study revealed 80 breast-fed, full-term infants found that probiotics may be effective as a treatment strategy for crying.
Author states there is a lack of clinical evidence to fully support any one treatment for colic although probiotics is showing some promise. Author points out need for further research.