**UPDATE - VSL3 not the good stuff? Lawsuit settled and now original product being sold as Visbiome?


I've combed through the search on VSL first, so I'm not repeating questions already asked. But there's nothing newer than 2016. So I'm asking you, before I see the doctor tomorrow:

1.Do I want the capsules or powder? It seems like the capsules are a much lower dose, but are they effective? Also the costs are significantly different.

2.Price seems less on Amazon, but is that not a good choice?

3.There's also the issue of the DS version, which needs an RX, but is substantially more expensive. No insurance coverage for this.

4. Side effects and how long they last, of the different versions.

Any advice on all of these questions so I can go in tomorrow with a clear request. If you have any current experience with this and you have a moment to spare, I'd really appreciate it! Thank you!

The issues to be treated are: on an off, daily, liquid BMs with - butt burn if it lasts all day. Sometimes can go weeks. Then formed stools. No food or other reason things would change. Also cramping episodes, so much that I have been at the point of thinking I might have twists in the pouch and may need surgery. Now, seemingly resolved for the moment - with no reason or action on my part. Plus, the probiotic strains in VSL are some of the best for helping with anxiety and depression. My biggest life issue. New research on this helped me think I could fix two birds with one so-called stone.



Original Post

Tulsamom, I’ve been getting good results from VSL for about ten years. I was able to persuade my insurance company to cover the DS version, but it was a year-long fight. My sense is that it’s quite close to the Visbiome formula that actually was tested in all that research, but VSL is, apparently, a counterfeit. It’s a high-quality counterfeit, though. I’m staying on the VSL because 1) it works for me, 2) the formula is quite similar to Visbiome, and 3) my insurance company’s policy names VSL specifically, so they almost certainly wouldn’t cover Visbiome.

The capsules and the powder are identical products. The cost per CFU (live bacterium) seemed quite similar among the forms when I compared them some years ago. Dose definitely matters for me - I take a lot: 4 DS packets daily. When I lower the dose I find increased symptoms. I’d have to take 32 capsules daily to get the same dose.

If you have pouchitis VSL alone is probably inadequate to treat it. You’d probably be more successful getting it under control with antibiotics, and then maintaining with VSL.

Thank you Scott! I'm not using it for pouchitis. Just to give my system some stability so it doesn't change constantly and destabilize so often. Plus the benefits for psychological health, hopefully. I found a research paper stating that the Italian made VSL had a slightly different effect than the VSL that used to be made in the US with the original formula. It probably wouldn't make any difference to most people. And if I were you, having insurance coverage of it, I wouldn't change either.

VSL3# capsules or the DS sachets are considered to be top notch probiotics specially for patients with IBD or jpouch. 

I used to take 1 capsule a day for a month after my first surgery. The effects were not very visible as nothing changes the ostomy outputs too much. Post takedown I only took only one probiotic strain i.e. lactic acid basillus. Then I bought a low strength probiotic from garden of life with a strength of 25 million. I took it for sometime irregularly and saw no visible change on the pouch or the ouput. 

Very recently I took VSL3# capsules again and I got severe gas and bloating. I needed body to get adjusted to it. But the gas and cramping was so much, I had to quit it within 3 days of use. 

Now I am going to try taking one tablet on alternate days to lessen the effects and slowly go upwards. 

I've been living with a S-pouch for 34 years just a handful of pouch flare ups during that time, still everyday there are reminders how adnormal it is to live with this type of procedure. I my case it's been a testament of patience and resolve .  I found VSL to be a great addition to help with any kind of imbalance in the gut. Its great to see.the growth in awareness for gut health.. 


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