Lactobacillus GG in the Prevention of Nosocomial Gastrointestinal and Respiratory Tract Infections

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  1. PEDIATRICS Vol. 125 No. 5 May 1, 2010 
    pp. e1171 -e1177 
    (doi: 10.1542/peds.2009-2568)
  1. » AbstractFree

  1. Iva Hojsak, MDa
  2. Slaven Abdović, MDa
  3. Hania Szajewska, MDb,
  4. Milan Milošević, MDc
  5. Željko Krznarić, MD, PhDd
  6. Sanja Kolaček, MD, PhDa
+Author Affiliations

  1. aReferral Center for Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition, Children’s Hospital Zagreb, Klaićeva 16, Zagreb, Croatia;

  2. b2nd Department of Pediatrics, Medical University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland;

  3. cDepartment for Environmental and Occupational Health, “Andrija Štampar” School of Public Health, Rockefellerova 4, Zagreb, Croatia; and

  4. dDivision of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University Hospital Center Zagreb, Kispaticeva 12, Zagreb, Croatia


OBJECTIVE: The incidence of nosocomial infections, predominantly gastrointestinal and respiratory, in children in developed countries is high, ranging from 5% to 44%. There is no effective strategy for preventing these infections. The objective of our study was to investigate the role ofLactobacillusGG (LGG) in preventing nosocomial gastrointestinal and respiratory tract infections at a pediatric hospital.
METHODS: We conducted a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of 742 hospitalized children. They were randomly allocated to receive for their hospitalization LGG at a dose of 109 colony-forming units in 100 mL of a fermented milk product (LGG group, n = 376) or placebo that was the same postpasteurized fermented milk product without LGG (placebo group, n = 366).
RESULTS: In the LGG group, compared with the placebo group, we found a significantly reduced risk for gastrointestinal infections (relative risk [RR]: 0.40 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.25–0.70]; number needed to treat: 15 [95% CI: 9–34)], respiratory tract infections (RR: 0.38 [95% CI: 0.18–0.85]; number needed to treat: 30 [95% CI: 16–159]), vomiting episodes (RR: 0.5 [95% CI: 0.3–0.9]), diarrheal episodes (RR: 0.24 [95% CI: 0.10–0.50]), episodes of gastrointestinal infections that lasted >2 days (RR: 0.40 [95% CI: 0.25–0.70]), and episodes of respiratory tract infections that lasted >3 days (RR: 0.4 [95% CI: 0.2–0.9]). Groups did not differ in hospitalization duration (P = .1).
CONCLUSIONS: LGG administration can be recommended as a valid measure for decreasing the risk for nosocomial gastrointestinal and respiratory tract infections in pediatric facilities.

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