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International Probiotics Association Objects to Media Depiction of AAD/CDD Study, Provides Further Insight to Study Results
Date:8/14/2013

Zurich, Switzerland (PRWEB) August 14, 2013

In a recently published study, Allen and co-workers (2013) report on a specific probiotic preparation to reduce the incidence and/or duration of antibiotic associated diarrhea (AAD) and Clostridium difficile diarrhea (CDD). Despite the null outcome, the authors should be congratulated with performing the largest study of its kind to date, consisting of almost 3,000 participants. The International Probiotics Association (IPA), however, would like to point out several design issues with the study that would impact the authors’ general conclusions.

The first issue is the broad and sweeping interpretation by the authors stating that “…no evidence that a multi-strain preparation of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria was effective in prevention of AAD or CDD.” This is not appropriate given that there are a variety of species and strains within the two genera. The article also does not mention that the product used in the study is commercially available. A previous article with the study protocol does provide such information (Allen et al. 2012). A previous study had shown that the same product reduced the incidence of CDD (Plummer et al. 2004) and appears to influence the microbiota composition when challenged by antibiotics (Plummer et al. 2005; Madden et al. 2005). Instead of discussing probiotics and AAD in general, why were such contradicting findings of the same product not discussed in the recent paper (Allen et al. 2013)?

One also cannot dismiss the numerous studies using different single and multi-strain probiotic combinations in a variety of delivery systems (e.g. supplement capsule, powder or yogurt) that also dispute the findings of Allen, et al. (2013) and show efficacy against AAD, as well as CDD (Hempel et al. 2012; Johnston et al. 2012; Rogers et al. 2013; Goldenberg et al. 2013).

The second issue is how the study was described by some media outlets: The
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