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Emergency Medical Minute


Mar 27, 2019

Author: Sam Killian, MD

Educational Pearls:

  • Viral gastroenteritis alters the gut microbiome and it is theorized that probiotics may help reduce the duration and severity of the disease.
  • Double-blind randomized controlled trial involving almost 900 children with viral gastroenteritis compared 5 days of probiotics to a control group.
  • There was no difference in the rates of severe gastroenteritis between the two groups
  • Probiotics are likely unhelpful for kid with viral gastroenteritis


Freedman SB, Williamson-Urquhart S, Farion KJ, Gouin S, Willan AR, Poonai N, Hurley K, Sherman PM, Finkelstein Y, Lee BE, Pang XL, Chui L, Schnadower D, Xie J, Gorelick M, Schuh S; PERC PROGUT Trial Group.. Multicenter Trial of a Combination Probiotic for Children with Gastroenteritis. N Engl J Med. 2018 Nov 22;379(21):2015-2026. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1802597. PubMed PMID: 30462939.

Summarized by Will Dewispelaere, MS3 | Edited by Erik Verzemnieks, MD