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09 Jul 2021
Probiotics can be taken in almost any circumstances and by all ages. More information can be found in our frequently asked questions section and by reading the article: Are probiotics safe to take? However, there are a very small number of circumstances when we recommend that they are NOT taken without a discussion with your doctor first as they may be contraindicated with either a medical condition or another drug.
In this article we look at medical conditions that preclude the use of probiotic supplements, and also medicines and supplements that require special considerations when taken alongside probiotics.
A contraindication is a specific situation (or medical condition) in which a drug, supplement, procedure, or even surgery should not be used because it may be harmful to the patient.
Probiotics are not recommended for those with serious medical conditions eg. those who are severely immunosuppressed, have pancreatitis, are in the ICU, have melaena (dark blood in their stool), have a central venous catheter, infants with short bowel syndrome, or to patients with open wounds following major surgery; unless under a doctor's care. Furthermore, pregnant or breastfeeding women should also consult their doctor before taking certain live cultures.
However, these medical circumstances have only been highlighted as there is limited research on how probiotics react with them. It is therefore recommended that probiotic supplements are not taken in these circumstances unless with the advice of a doctor. We also suggest you contact providers directly for guidance on their individual products.
There are no known contraindications with medical drugs or supplements, however there are some considerations when taking a probiotic supplement with certain medications or supplements:
Healthcare practitioners may like to visit our Professionals site for further information on the following: