Navigation Links
Could Baby's Tummy Bacteria Help Spur Colic?
Date:1/14/2013

By Serena Gordon
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Colic is a common problem for babies, and new research may finally provide clues to its cause: A small study found that infants with colic seemed to develop certain intestinal bacteria later than those without the condition.

What the researchers aren't clear on yet is why this would make some infants go on long crying jags nightly for months. The study authors suspect that without the right balance of intestinal flora, the babies may experience more pain and inflammation.

In particular, the study found differences in two types of bacteria. One is proteobacteria. The other is probiotics, which include bifidobacteria and lactobacilli.

"Already in the first two weeks of life, specific significant differences between both groups were found. Proteobacteria were increased in infants with colic, with a more-than-doubled relative abundance. These included specific species that are known to produce gas," said study author Carolina de Weerth, an associate professor of developmental psychology at Radboud University in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

"On the other hand, bifidobacteria and lactobacilli were increased in control infants," she said. "These included species that would induce anti-inflammatory effects. Moreover, samples from infants with colic were found to contain fewer bacteria related to butyrate-producing species. Butyrate is known to reduce pain in adults. These microbial signatures possibly explain the excessive crying."

Results of the study appeared online Jan. 14 and in the February print issue of Pediatrics.

Colic affects up to 25 percent of infants, De Weerth said. It is defined as crying for an average of more than three hours a day, generally between birth and 3 months of age, according to background information in the study.

Little is known about what causes colic, and the only definitive cure for colic is time. The excessive crying usually stops at around 4 months of age, according to the study.

"Newborn crying is quite variable, and between 2 weeks and 8 or 10 weeks you can expect at least an hour of crying in a day. There may be some who cry less; some who cry more. But, babies with colic really do cry for three to four hours a day," said Dr. Michael Hobaugh, chief of medical staff at La Rabida Children's Hospital, in Chicago.

In the current study, the researchers tested more than 200 fecal samples from 12 infants with colic and 12 infants with low levels of crying (the control group). Colic was determined at 6 weeks of age.

The fecal samples were tested for more than 1,000 known intestinal microbes. There were four samples taken during the first month and then another five samples were collected between three and five months.

They showed significant differences in the microbial flora between babies with colic and those without. The researchers say these findings might lead to early screening tests for colic, or possibly for a treatment for colic.

De Weerth said it's "possible to make positive changes to the microbiota of babies with colic with the use of probiotics." She also said that the mother's diet in pregnancy and while breast-feeding could have an influence, and that adding probiotics and prebiotics (good bacteria) to infant formula might also positively influence a baby's intestinal flora.

But, not everyone's convinced that anything should be added to infant formula just yet.

"This was an interesting, intriguing study, but it's not definitive," said Dr. Peter Belamarich, medical director of the pediatric ambulatory subspecialty service at the Children's Hospital at Montefiore, in New York City.

Hobaugh also said it is too early to make conclusions.

"I would be very cautious about supplementing infants with probiotics. Probiotics are generally safe and don't cause invasive infections generally, but sometimes they do. And, since colic does eventually go away on its own, the risk of potentially doing harm seems too high," he said.

But, Hobaugh said if a mother is breast-feeding, adding yogurt, which contains beneficial bacteria, to her diet would be OK. He added that he wasn't sure if it would help, though.

For his part, Belamarich advised parents to work closely with their babies' pediatrician to come up with a plan for dealing with colic. He said the first thing that needs to be done is to make sure the baby is healthy and thriving. Once you know for sure it's colic, he said the good news is that the condition hasn't been associated with any long-term problems.

He said that before parents give their babies any new foods or medicines, they should check with their child's pediatrician first.

"There are a lot of things that are difficult to treat that are targets for miracle cures. Colic is one of them. Parents should be aware that there's no miracle cure for colic," Belamarich said.

Hobaugh said that swaddling your baby can help, and suggested that parents sleep when the baby sleeps.

His final piece of advice? "Hang in there. It will get better."

More information

To learn more about colic, read this from the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

SOURCES: Carolina de Weerth, Ph.D., associate professor, developmental psychology, Radboud University, Nijmegen, the Netherlands; Michael Hobaugh, M.D., Ph.D., chief, medical staff, La Rabida Children's Hospital, Chicago; Peter Belamarich, M.D., medical director, pediatric ambulatory subspecialty service, the Children's Hospital at Montefiore Medical Center, New York City; February 2013 Pediatrics


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. New treatment could combat deadly chemical agents
2. Inclusion of CTC as HEDIS screening modality could increase colorectal cancer screening compliance
3. Pap Test Could Spot Some Ovarian Cancers, Study Finds
4. Tricorder invention could put medical diagnosis and terrorism prevention in the palm of the hand
5. Postpartum depression prevalent in under-developed countries, could impact baby health and mortality
6. Cheap and easy technique to snip DNA could revolutionize gene therapy
7. Psychological Woes Could Arise During Interplanetary Spaceflight: Study
8. Psychological common ground could ease tensions among those with different religious beliefs
9. New understanding of nerve damage caused by spinal cord injury could improve treatment design
10. Revolutionary techniques could help harness patients own immune cells to fight disease
11. Previous studies on toxic effects of BPA couldnt be reproduced
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Could Baby's Tummy Bacteria Help Spur Colic? 
(Date:3/30/2017)... ... March 30, 2017 , ... This morning, more ... Trump expressing their support for an independent Vaccine Safety Commission. Five of the ... medical journalist, will hold a press conference at 9:00 AM Friday, March ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 29, 2017 , ... In the United States alone, up to 36% ... other types of metastatic brain tumors(3). Though most meningiomas are benign, metastatic brain tumors ... finding more effective treatment options, the San Diego Gamma Knife Center offers ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 30, 2017 , ... Grass pollen is the main cause of hay fever in ... The season for grass pollen runs from May to July each year; with the worst ... to do? HayMax™ allergen barrier balms ( http://www.haymax.us ) provide an effective defense against grass ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... March 30, 2017 , ... Sublime Naturals ... "Spice of Life" or "Wonder Spice", it has been used for thousands of years. ... the East," says Heshelow, author of " Turmeric: How to Use it For Your ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... Baton Rouge, Louisiana (PRWEB) , ... March 29, ... ... trademarked HeartBoost in three Hours at a Walgreens store in Mississippi. AngioGenesis Labs, ... campaign at Walgreens Stores in two southeastern states. Ingredients in HeartBoost, an over ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/29/2017)... 29, 2017  Bodycad announced today that it ... 510(k) clearance for its Bodycad Unicompartmental Knee System, ... orthopaedic restoration. Bodycad is the first Canadian company ... implant system. Bodycad,s revolutionary Unicompartmental ... of the patient,s unique anatomical features and kinematics. ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... Mar. 29, 2017 Research and Markets has ... 2017-2021" report to their offering. ... The global energy-based aesthetic devices market to ... The report, Global Energy-Based Aesthetic Devices Market 2017-2021, has ... industry experts. The report covers the market landscape and its growth ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... -- Global intravenous (IV) iron and oral iron market is ... a CAGR of 5%. Iron drugs are ... anemia or other iron deficiencies. Oral iron supplements are recommended ... some cases, oral administrations are not capable of maintaining the ... comes into the picture. Global Intravenous (IV) Iron ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: