IN THIS ARTICLE
Infantile colic is a condition that is far from easy to treat. Current conventional treatments fall into one of the following four categories: dietary, physical, behavioral, and pharmacological. With little evidence to favor the first three approaches, there is some evidence that the drug dicyclomine hydrochloride can be effective, although its safety came into question after reports of severe side effects occurring in about 5% of infants, and in some extreme cases it has been linked to infant death
Although some encouraging results exist for fennel extract, mixed herbal tea, and sugar solutions, design flaws and the absence of independent replications preclude practice recommendations. The evidence for probiotic supplements and manual therapies does not indicate an effect. Thus, the notion that any form of complimentary or alternative medicine is effective for infantile colic is currently not supported from the evidence from the included RCTs. Additional research into this prevalent, and often difficult to treat, condition seems warranted.
Many therapies (both traditional and holistic) have been tried to help lessen the symptoms and duration of colic. Many of these anecdotal approaches have not demonstrated success in scientific studies. Some involve the following:
A variety of herbal and complementary medical therapies have been advocated. Herbal teas (chamomile, licorice, fennel, and mint) have strong support in some communities. It is generally believed that small amounts may provide some relief and will not do harm. They should not be used in place of formula or breast milk..
Several years ago, a medication (dicyclomine [Bentyl, Byclomine, Dibent, Di-Spaz, Dilomine]) was shown to decrease the symptoms of colic. However, rare side effects of sedation, cessation of breathing, coma, seizures, and death occurred and the medication is no longer in use for colic.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/24/2015
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