lactobacillus acidophilus (generic name)

a probiotic - treats Vaginal candidiasis, Asthma, H. pylori infection, Irritable bowel syndrome, Bacterial vaginosis, Immunomodulation, Lactose...
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WARNING: DISCLAIMER: The below uses are based on tradition, scientific theories, or limited research. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider. There may be other proposed uses that are not listed below.
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Adults (18 years and older)

Expert opinion suggests that a dose between 1 and 10 billion viable (live) Lactobacillus acidophilus bacteria taken daily in divided doses by mouth is sufficient for most people. Higher doses may cause mild abdominal discomfort, and smaller doses may not be able to establish a stable population in the gut. For vaginal bacterial infections, a dose that has been used is 8 ounces of yogurt containing Lactobacillus acidophilus in a concentration of 100 million colony-forming units (108 CFU) in each milliliter. Capsules containing 1.5 grams of Lactobacillus acidophilus were used in one study.

Doses that have been used for vaginal infections include 1 to 2 tablets (containing 10 million to 1 billion CFU in each tablet), inserted into the vagina once or twice daily. Capsules containing 1.5 grams of Lactobacillus acidophilus have been used to treat diarrhea as anal suppositories.

Children (younger than 18 years)

Some natural medicine textbooks and experts suggest that one-quarter teaspoon or one-quarter capsule of commercially available Lactobacillus acidophilus may be safe for use in children for the replacement of gut bacteria destroyed by antibiotics. Up to 12 billion lyophilized heat-killed Lactobacillus acidophilus has been given every 12 hours by mouth for up to five days. It is often recommended that Lactobacillus acidophilus supplements be taken two hours after antibiotic doses because antibiotics may kill Lactobacillus acidophilus if taken at the same time. Consult a qualified healthcare practitioner prior to using Lactobacillus acidophilus in children, and use cautiously in those under three years of age.

Liquid preparations have been used on the diaper area to treat yeast infections, although safety and effectiveness are not well studied. Consult a qualified healthcare practitioner prior to using Lactobacillus acidophilus in children, and use cautiously in those under three years of age.


DISCLAIMER: Many complementary techniques are practiced by healthcare professionals with formal training, in accordance with the standards of national organizations. However, this is not universally the case, and adverse effects are possible. Due to limited research, in some cases only limited safety information is available.


Lactose sensitive people may develop abdominal discomfort from dairy products containing Lactobacillus acidophilus.

Side Effects and Warnings

Studies report few side effects from Lactobacillus acidophilus when used at recommended doses. The most common complaint is abdominal discomfort or gas, which usually resolves with continued use. Some experts recommend limiting the daily dose of living Lactobacillus acidophilus organisms to reduce the risk of abdominal discomfort. Some women have reported burning of the vagina after using Lactobacillus acidophilus vaginal tablets.

There are rare reports of infections of heart valves with Lactobacillus acidophilus, and the risk may be greater in people with artificial heart valves. People with severely weakened immune systems (due to disease or drugs like cancer chemotherapy and organ transplant immunosuppressants) may develop serious infections or bacteria in the blood from taking Lactobacillus acidophilus. Therefore, Lactobacillus acidophilus should be avoided in such individuals. People with intestinal damage or recent bowel surgery should avoid taking lactobacilli.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

There is not enough scientific study available to establish safety during pregnancy. Therefore, pregnant women should use Lactobacillus acidophilus cautiously and under medical supervision, if at all. A small number of pregnant women have taken part in studies investigating Lactobacillus acidophilus vaginal tablets and a culture of Lactobacillus acidophilus with no negative effects reported. Further research is necessary.

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