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THE USE OF 3 SELECTED LACTOBACILLARY STRAINS IN VAGINAL PROBIOTIC GEL FOR THE TREATMENT OF ACUTE CANDIDA VAGINITIS: A PROOF-OF-CONCEPT STUDY

Authors: Gilbert Donders, Gert Bellen, Eline Oerlemans, Ingmar Claes, Kateryna Ruban, Tim Henkens, Filip Kiekens & Sarah Lebeer

“In vitro studies suggest that certain probiotic bacterial strains have potential activity against opportunistic infections such as Candida. There are few in vivo trials using probiotics as a single treatment for acute Candida vulvovaginitis (CV). In this open-label, proof-of-concept study, selected Lactobacillus strains were tested in women with acute Candida vaginitis. Twenty women diagnosed with proven, symptomatic CV were instructed to administer a vaginal probiotic gel with L. plantarum YUN-V2.0L. pentosus YUN-V1.0 and L. rhamnosus YUN-S1.0 for 10 consecutive days. Vaginal rinsing fluid, vaginal culture swab and vaginal smear for fresh wet-mount microscopy were collected before and 7, 14 and 28 days after start of treatment. On average, participating women were 39 years old and had an history of 5 vaginal infections of which 95% was CV. Nine women (45%) completed the study without the need of rescue medication. Women who needed rescue treatment experienced twice as much Candida infections in the past. A negative correlation was found between the clinical composite score and the time to use rescue medication (R2 = 0.127). Seventy-four per cent of participants found the study gel comfortable to use, and 42% of all women would use the tested gel again for this indication. Forty-five per cent of women were treated successfully for acute CV with a novel vaginal gel containing 3 selected Lactobacillus strains. Patients needing rescue treatment were suffering from more severe and long-standing disease. These results warrant for further testing of this new product, especially of its potential in cases with mild to moderate severity, as an adjuvant to antimycotics or as a preventive measure in women with recurrent vulvovaginal candidosis.”

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