Probiotics for gastrointestinal disorders: Proposed recommendations for children of the Asia-Pacific region

World J Gastroenterol. 2017 Dec 7;23(45):7952-7964. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v23.i45.7952.


Recommendations for probiotics are available in several regions. This paper proposes recommendations for probiotics in pediatric gastrointestinal diseases in the Asia-Pacific region. Epidemiology and clinical patterns of intestinal diseases in Asia-Pacific countries were discussed. Evidence-based recommendations and randomized controlled trials in the region were revised. Cultural aspects, health management issues and economic factors were also considered. Final recommendations were approved by applying the Likert scale and rated using the GRADE system. Saccharomyces boulardii CNCM I-745 (Sb) and Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG) were strongly recommended as adjunct treatment to oral rehydration therapy for gastroenteritis. Lactobacillus reuteri could also be considered. Probiotics may be considered for prevention of (with the indicated strains): antibiotic-associated diarrhea (LGG or Sb); Clostridium difficile-induced diarrhea (Sb); nosocomial diarrhea (LGG); infantile colic (L reuteri) and as adjunct treatment of Helicobacter pylori (Sb and others). Specific probiotics with a history of safe use in preterm and term infants may be considered in infants for prevention of necrotizing enterocolitis. There is insufficient evidence for recommendations in other conditions. Despite a diversity of epidemiological, socioeconomical and health system conditions, similar recommendations apply well to Asia pacific countries. These need to be validated with local randomized-controlled trials.

Keywords: Asia-Pacific; Children; Gastroenteritis; Guidelines; Lactobacillus rhamnosus; Probiotics; Recommendations; Saccharomyces boulardii.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Asia / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Cultural Characteristics
  • Developing Countries*
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / epidemiology
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / etiology
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / microbiology
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome / physiology*
  • Gastrointestinal Tract / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Probiotics / standards
  • Probiotics / therapeutic use*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Socioeconomic Factors