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By Serena Gordon


THURSDAY, Oct. 30 (HealthDay News) --Virgin coconut oil, added toantibiotic therapy, may help relieve the symptomsof community-acquiredpneumonia in kids faster than antibiotic therapy alone, anew study finds.

星期四,10月30日(HealthDay新闻)—— 一项新的研究发现,添加了初榨椰子油的抗生素治疗可能有助于治疗患有肺炎的孩子,比单纯的抗生素治疗疗效更快

Children who received coconut oiltherapy along with antibioticshad fewer crackles (a wheezing sound in thelungs), a shorter time with anelevated respiratory rate and fever, betteroxygen saturation in the blood, andshorter hospital stays, according to thestudy.


'Earlier normaliz ation of respiratoryrate and resolution ofcrackles could also mean possible earlier discharge,'said the study'slead author, Dr. Gilda Sapphire Erguiza, a pediatricpulmonologist at thePhilippine Children's Medical Center in Quezon City.

这项研究的首席作者菲律宾奎松市儿童医院小儿呼吸科的Gilda Sapphire Erguiza博士说:“早期的呼吸频率和杂音的正常化意味着孩子可以提前出院。”

The study's findings were due to bepresented Wednesday at theAmerican College of Chest Physicians meeting inPhiladelphia.


Community-acquired pneumonia is an infectionof the lungs that iscontracted outside a hospital setting. It is a seriousinfection in childrenand affects as many as 34 to 40 youngsters per 1,000children in Europe andNorth America, according to the American Academy ofFamily Physicians (AAFP).Lower respiratory infections are one of the leadingcauses of childhoodmortality in developing countries, according to the AAFP.


The current study included 40 childrenbetween the ages of 3months and 5 years old. All had community-acquiredpneumonia and were beingtreated intravenously with the antibiotic ampicillin.


Half of the group was randomized toalso receive oral virgincoconut oil in a daily dose of 2 milliliters per everykilogram of weight. Theoil was given for three days in a row.


The researchers found that therespiratory rate normalized in 32.6hours for the virgin coconut oil groupversus 48.2 hours for the control group,according to the study. After threedays, patients in the control group weremore likely to still have crackles thanthose in the coconut oil group -- 60percent of the controls still had cracklescompared to 25 percent of thecoconut oil group.


Those in the coconut oil group also hadfevers for a shorter time,had normal oxygen saturation faster, and had shorterhospital stays, butErguiza said these findings did not reach statisticalsignificance.


How might the coconut oil work to easepneumonia? Erguizahypothesized that it may boost ampicillin's effectivenessbecause it containslauric acid, which is known to have antimicrobialproperties, she said.


One expert said the findings aren'tdefinitive, however.


'This is a very interesting but smallstudy. The jury's stillout as to whether there's a real benefit here,' said Dr.Daniel Rauch,director of the pediatric hospitalist program at New YorkUniversity Langone MedicalCenter.

纽约大学附属儿童医院Langone医疗中心的主任Daniel Rauch博士说:“这是一个规模很小但很有意思的研究。陪审团的成员还在鉴定是否椰子油真的能够帮助对抗儿童肺炎。”

Rauch said he wouldn't discourage aparent from trying thistreatment, as long as they were still using antibiotics,but he said it'simportant that children aren't forced to take virgin coconutoil, or any otheroil for that matter. The concern, he said, is that if a childis forced toingest something like coconut oil, and doesn't really don't wantto, he or shemay end up choking on it and aspirating the oil into the lungs,which is verydangerous.


In an effort to prevent some pneumoniasfrom occurring in thefirst place, the Pneumococcal Awareness Council of Expertsinitiated a'Global Call to Action' on Oct. 24 to urge greater access tothepneumococcal vaccine in poor countries. According to the U.S. CentersforDisease Control and Prevention's journal, Morbidity and MortalityWeeklyReport, the pneumococcal vaccine has been introduced in 26countriesworldwide, though none are low-income countries.