BACKGROUND: Constipation is a frustrating symptom affecting 3% of children worldwide. A fermented dairy product containing Bifidobacterium lactis strain DN-173 010 was effective in increasing stool frequency in constipated women. Our aim was to assess the effects of this product in constipated children. METHODS: In this prospective randomized, double-blind, controlled trial, 159 constipated children (defecation frequency < 3 times per week) were randomly allocated to receive either a fermented dairy product that contains B lactis DN-173 010 (n = 79) or a control product (n = 80) twice a day for 3 weeks. The primary endpoint was the change in stool frequency from baseline to after 3 weeks of product consumption. Analyses were by intention to treat. RESULTS: Eleven children did not return to any follow-up visit (5 in the probiotic group, 6 in the control group) and were therefore excluded from the final analysis. Thus, 74 children in each group were analyzed. The change in stool frequency from baseline to after 3 weeks of product consumption increased in both groups, but the difference was not statistically significant (2.9 ± 3.2 in probiotic group versus 2.6 ± 2.6 in control group, P = .35). There were no serious adverse events. CONCLUSIONS: In constipated children, the fermented dairy product containing B lactis strain DN-173 010 did increase stool frequency, but this increase was comparable in the control group. There is currently not sufficient evidence to recommend fermented dairy products containing B lactis strain DN-173 010 in this category of patients. Future studies should focus on whether a longer period of probiotic products is more effective in children who have a short history of constipation. Copyright © 2011 by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Tabbers, M. M., Chmielewska, A., Roseboom, M. G., Crastes, N., Perrin, C., Reitsma, J. B., ... Benninga, M. A. (2011). Fermented milk containing Bifidobacterium lactis DN-173 010 in childhood constipation: A randomized, double-blind, controlled trial. Pediatrics, 127(6). https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2010-2590