Interaction between rifaximin and dietary fibre in patients with diverticular disease

R. D'Incà, F. Pomerri, M. G. Vettorato, E. Dal Pont, V. Di Leo, A. Ferronato, Valentina Medici, G. C. Sturniolo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Background: Cyclic administration of rifaximin in association with dietary fibre achieves symptomatic relief in uncomplicated diverticular disease (DD) by means of a still undefined mechanism. Aim: To investigate the effects of a combination of rifaximin and fibre on both hydrogen production by intestinal microflora and oro-anal transit time. Methods: In a controlled, double-blind crossover trial, 64 patients with uncomplicated DD were given bran (20 g/day) and randomly treated with rifaximin (1200 mg/day) or a placebo for 14 days. Evaluation was based on clinical status, breath test, oro-anal transit time and faecal weight. Results: The global symptomatic score was significantly reduced after rifaximin (7.1 ± 4.1 to 4.1 ± 3.3; P < 0.005) but not after placebo (6.8 ± 3.8 to 6.1 ± 3.5). Hydrogen production significantly increased after placebo from 198 ± 134 to 267 ± 161 ppm/min, while Rifaximin reduced it from 222 ± 187 to 166 ± 131 ppm/min (P = 0.05). The total oro-anal transit time decreased from 56.1 ± 28.2 to 51.3 ± 28.0 h in placebo and from 54.4 ± 31.9 to 45.1 ± 32.4 h (P < 0.05) in rifaximin-treated patients. Conclusions: The administration of rifamixin improves the benefits of dietary fibre in uncomplicated DD by preventing its bacterial degradation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)771-779
Number of pages9
JournalAlimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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