Lactobacilli, Estriol and Bacterial Vaginosis

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Reference: Parent D, Bossens M, Bayot D, et al. Therapy of bacterial vaginosis using exogenously applied Lactobacilli acidophili and a low dose of estriol. A placebo-controlled multi-centric clinical trial. Arzneim-Forsch Drug Res 1996; 46(1):68-73.

Summary: Pregnant and nonpregnant women with mild to moderately severe bacterial vaginosis agreed to participate in this study. The 24 nonpregnant and 8 pregnant women ranged in age from 20 to 52. None had used other treatments in the two weeks leading up to the trial and had taken no systemic hormonal treatments except for oral contraceptives. The volunteers were randomized to receive vaginal suppositories of either freeze-dried Lactobacillus acidophilus (10 million viable, hydrogen peroxide-producing organisms per capsule) combined with 0.03 mg of estriol or similar appearing placebo. One or two suppositories were inserted daily for six days, with results being checked two and four weeks after treatment. Comparing the clinical criteria for diagnosing bacterial vaginosis (grey-white leukorrhea, acidic vaginal pH, positive sniff test and presence of clue cells), the participants using the probiotic/estriol suppositories improved significantly compared to those using placebo. Based on these criteria, the cure rate (i.e. zero or one criteria present after treatment) was 88% in the women receiving probiotic/estriol suppositories at four weeks, compared to 22% in those receiving the placebo. Significantly more women using the probiotic/estriol suppositories had at least 30 lactobacilli per microscopic field of view compared to women using the placebo. One suppository daily was just as effective as two. There was one report of a burning sensation upon application of the probiotic/estriol preparation, but otherwise no side effects were reported.

Natural Product Research Consultants, Inc.

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