Ask Dr. Swanson: Probiotics

Dr.Swanson reports

Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson of Seattle Children’s Hospital on probiotics vs. antibiotics, and why you may want to consider introducing your child to probiotics.

Antibiotic overview

  • CDC states that one in three antibiotic prescriptions are unnecessary
  • Antibiotic-associated diarrhea is estimated in roughly 10-20 percent of patients
  • Other side effects include: abdominal cramps, nausea, and skin rash and/or hives


  • Some live bacteria and yeasts that are good for your health
  • Probiotics are often called "good" bacteria because they help keep your gut healthy
  • Probiotics are supplements, NOT regulated by the FDA

New JAMA study on probiotics

  • Probiotics are associated with lower rates of antibiotic-associated diarrhea in children (aged one month to 18 years)
  • No increased adverse events
  • If your child is on antibiotics, talk to your pediatrician about introducing probiotics

Helpful resources

Copyright 2016 KING


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