Dr Roy and colleagues from Bangladesh investigated the impact of zinc supplementation in children with cholera.
The team assessed 179 children aged 3 to 14 years with watery diarrhea and stool dark field examination positive for Vibrio cholerae, and confirmed by stool culture.
|Zinc supplemented patients had 12% shorter duration of diarrhea|
|British Medical Journal|
The team randomized 90 children to receive 30 mg elemental zinc per day, and 89 to placebo until recovery.
All children received erythromycin suspension orally in a dose of 12.5 mg/kg every 6 hours for 3 days.
The team measured duration of diarrhea and stool output.
The researchers reported that 82 children in each group completed the study.
More patients in the zinc group than in the control group recovered by 2 days, and by 3 days.
Zinc supplemented patients had 12% shorter duration of diarrhea than control patients, and 11% less stool output.
Dr Roy's team concluded, "Zinc supplementation significantly reduced the duration of diarrhea and stool output in children with cholera."
"Children with cholera should be supplemented with zinc to reduce its duration and severity."