Probiotic is tied to reduced GI risk in children with cow’s milk allergy

  • J Pediatr
  • 18.07.2019

  • von Craig Hicks
  • Clinical Essentials
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Takeaway

  • Children with cow’s milk allergy (CMA) as infants may have reduced risk for functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) later in life if treated with a combination of extensively hydrolyzed casein formula (EHCF) and the probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG).
  • Researchers report reduced functional dyspepsia, constipation, and abdominal pain.

Why this matters

  • This simple dietary intervention, if validated in larger trials, could present a possible low-cost preventative for later, potentially chronic gastrointestinal conditions.

Study design

  • Researchers examined children with a history of CMA during the first year of life who subsequently outgrew it ≥12 months before the study period (n=220 plus 110 consecutive healthy controls).
  • They treated patients with either EHCF alone (Nutramigen) or in combination with LGG (Nutramigen LGG).
  • Funding: Italian Ministry of Health; Mead Johnson Nutrition.

Key results

  • EHCF+LGG group developed ≥1 FGID at a significantly lower rate than the EHCF group (40% vs 16.4%; P<.05>
  • The FGID incidence rate ratio for the EHCF+LGG group vs the EHCF group was unchanged after correcting for age at CMA diagnosis, breastfeeding, weaning time, and first-degree relatives with 1 or more FGIDs (0.40; 95% CI, 0.25-0.65; P<.001>

Limitations

  • The study was single-center, not randomized, and did not assess long-term treatment effects.
  • Results may not apply to children with other food allergies or health conditions.