Are Vaginal Probiotics Beneficial?

#ThursdayThoughts

As promised, each Thursday, we will now offer you a piece of educational, science, or research related information. The purpose of our #ThursdayThoughts post is to share with you fact-based content that can enlighten and assist you on your fertility journey. Enjoy our post! Helping to Create New Beginnings….

Are Vaginal Probiotics Beneficial?

Some of our patients have asked us whether they may benefit from taking a vaginal probiotic.  Dr. Caroline Mitchell, assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive biology at Harvard Medical School, states that there is scant evidence to support their effectiveness and today’s vaginal probiotic products should be viewed with “a healthy dose of skepticism.”  The most common species of Lactobacillus bacteria found in the vagina are L. crispatus and L. iners, while most retail probiotics and yogurt contain other species, such as L. rhamnosus or L. acidophilus.  Although Dr. Mitchell is skeptical about the benefit of vaginal probiotics, she notes that the probiotics that seem to show some benefit in studies are the ones containing Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1. There is also a product in clinical trials with Lactobacillus crispatus called Lactin-V that shows some promise.

At the Fertility Institute of Hawaii we generally do not advise most patients to supplement with vaginal probiotics, however there is a certain group of patients that may benefit from taking them prior to doing an embryo transfer.  If you have questions about taking vaginal probiotics and their potential impact on fertility, please schedule a consultation with one of our physicians 808-545-2800. You can also visit our website at https://www.ivfcenterhawaii.com/.

Reference: https://www.health.harvard.edu/womens-health/does-your-vagina-really-need-a-probiotic

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