Racecadotril does little for acute diarrhea in young children

  • Liang Y & al.
  • Cochrane Database Syst Rev
  • 19 Dec 2019

  • International Clinical Digest
Access to the full content of this site is available only to registered healthcare professionals. Access to the full content of this site is available only to registered healthcare professionals.

Takeaway

  • Racecadotril offers little benefit for acute diarrhea in children under age 5 years, say the authors of this Cochrane review.
  • It might reduce risk for rehydration failure, but any effect on number of bowel movements or duration of diarrhea is uncertain.

Why this matters

  • For children under age 5 years, acute diarrhea is a leading cause of death, largely because of fluid and electrolyte loss.
  • These authors say that current evidence does not support use of racecadotril in children under age 5 years as an adjunct to oral rehydration therapy.

Key results

  • The 7 included randomized controlled trials were conducted in France, Spain, India, Kenya, Peru, and Ecuador.
  • Vs placebo or no treatment, racecadotril was tied to reduced risk for rehydration failure (risk ratio, 0.41; 95% CI, 0.13-1.23), but evidence from the 2 relevant trials (n=192) was low certainty.
  • Not enough data were available for conclusions regarding duration of diarrhea or number of stools.
  • Racecadotril was not associated with reduced hospital stay.
  • It was not tied to increased adverse event rates.

Study design

  • Cochrane review of 7 randomized controlled trials assessing racecadotril vs no treatment or placebo in children under age 5 years.
  • Funding: Sichuan University, China; Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, UK; others.

Limitations

  • The limitations are those of the included trials.