Breaking News on Supplements, Health & Nutrition - Europe US edition | APAC edition

News > Research

Read more breaking news



No evidence that probiotics treats bacterial vaginosis: Study

By Mike Stones , 20-Oct-2009

There is not enough evidence to support the claim that probiotics can remedy or prevent bacterial vaginosis (BV), according to a new study conducted jointly by scientists in the United Arab Emirates, Belgium and Italy.

The study’s authors concluded that: “The current research does not provide conclusive evidence that probiotics are superior to or enhance the effectiveness of antibiotics in the treatment of BV. In addition, there is insufficient evidence to recommend the use of probiotics either before, during or after antibiotic treatment as a means of ensuring successful treatment or reduce recurrence.”

The effectiveness of probiotics in the treatment of BV should be confirmed by larger, well-designed randomized controlled trials with standardized methodologies, they added.

Supporting the study, a UK Department of Health spokesperson told that: “The NHS Choices website states there is no evidence of any complementary therapies that can cure Bacterial Vaginosis.”

NHS Choices advises antibiotics treatment of BV, which it says is up to 80 per cent effective.

Genital discomfort

One of the most common causes of genital discomfort in women of reproductive age, BV occurs when the population of normal vaginal micro-organisms, dominated by lactobacilli, is overgrown by other types of bacteria.

Since treating this condition with antibiotics can be ineffective and is associated with high rates of recurrence, the depleted lactobacilli population is sometimes augmented by the oral or vaginal introduction of probiotic strains.

To test the effectiveness of the treatment, the scientists investigated the evidence for the use of probiotic preparations either alone or in conjunction with antibiotics for the treatment of BV.

After a detailed database search, which included the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trial and the website of the International Scientific Association of Probiotics and Prebiotics, the scientists contacted authors from relevant publications, nutraceutical companies and probiotic-related scientific associations.

The focus was placed on randomised controlled trials using probiotics for the treatment of women of any age diagnosed with BV, regardless of diagnostic method used. The probiotic preparation could be single or a cocktail of strains and include any preparation type/dosage/route of administration.

Conventional antibiotics

Included in the research were studies that compared probiotics with placebo, probiotics used in conjunction with conventional antibiotics compared with placebo or probiotics alone compared with conventional antibiotics.

The study was conducted by the departments of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, Belgium and the department Medical and Morphological Research, University of Udine, Italy.

Related products

Live Supplier Webinars

Polyphenols tipped to become the way to innovate in Sports Nutrition
Alpha & Omega in Sports Nutrition – Using Omega 3’s and A-GPC to improve performance and recovery.
KD Pharma
Orally bioavailable standardized botanical derivatives in sport nutrition: special focus on recovery in post-intense physical activities
Collagen in motion: move freely and keep your injuries in check
Leading manufacturer of gelatine and collagen peptides
Life’s too short for slow proteins. Whey proteins hydrolysates: Fast delivery for enhanced performance
Arla Foods Ingredients
What it Takes to Compete and Win in Today’s Sports Nutrition Market
Sports Nutrition Snapshot: Key regional drivers and delivery format innovations
William Reed Business Media
Gutsy performance: How can microbiome modulation help athletes and weekend warriors
William Reed Business Media
Pushing the boundaries: Where’s the line between ‘cutting edge nutrition’ and doping
William Reed Business Media

On demand Supplier Webinars

High-amylose maize starch may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes: what does this qualified health claim mean?
Balancing Innovation and Risk in Sports Nutrition Ingredients
Explaining bio-hacking: is there a marketing opportunity for food companies?
William Reed Business Media
Personalized Nutrition – how an industry can take part in shaping the future of Nutrition
BASF Nutrition & Health
Find out Nutritional and ingredient lifecycle solutions and strategies!
Is the time rIpe for I-nutrition?
William Reed Business Media
The Advantage of Outsourcing Fermentation-based Manufacturing Processes
Evonik Health Care
All supplier webinars