Using probiotics can reduce C. difficile infection

One study found that people who received probiotics had a decrease in diagnosed C. difficile in stool samples than those who did not receive probiotics.

One study explored the use of probiotics and the subsequent effect on the development of Clostridioides difficile (C. difficile) infection (CDI) in people receiving fluoroquinolones.

The results showed that a higher percentage of proton pump inhibitor (PPI) use in the non-probiotic group was up 20% compared to the group receiving the probiotic. Additionally, people on fluoroquinolones who received probiotics had 0% of overall CDI cases compared to 3% in the non-probiotic group, but this was not statistically significant enough to draw a solid conclusion.

However, the second result of the study provided statistically more significant results. People who received probiotics had fewer stool samples diagnosed with C. difficile at 4% compared to 16% of their non-probiotic counterparts. Additionally, the probiotic group was reported to have 6% fewer additional infectious diagnostic tests performed.

Among those who experienced adverse reactions, vomiting in the non-probiotic group appeared to be significantly higher (9%) than among those given probiotics (2%).

According to the researchers, the study results call for further research into the use of probiotics to prevent CDI in high-risk patients. The use of probiotics has been shown to have beneficial effects in inhibiting C. difficile adhesion in the gut, as well as additional health benefits. Symptoms reported in the study also tended to decrease with the use of probiotics.

Investigators noted in a press release that most people who received probiotics were already receiving daily probiotic treatments before the study or started taking them at the same time as fluoroquinolone therapy. The complete treatment and dosage regimens have been determined by the attending physician.

The probiotics used were Saccharomyces boudardii and Lactobacillus spp. The study participants were all over 18 years of age and had received at least 3 days of intravenous monotherapy, oral levofloxacin, or ciprofloxacin within 3 days of admission to hospital.

The data collected by the researchers was based on the administration of antibiotics and probiotics which included use, timing of the first dose, number of doses, duration and use of receptor antagonists. PPI or histaimin-2.


Influence of probiotics on the development of Clostridioides difficile infection in patients receiving fluoroquinolones. MDPI. Case study. August 18, 2021. Accessed September 2, 2021.

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