Ninety-three boys aged 5 years or less who had diarrhea due to Vibrio cholerae were randomly assigned to treatment with glucose oral rehydration salt (ORS) or rice-based ORS. For the first 24 h, ORS only was given to all the patients. During the next 24 h, ORS and normal food were given. The efficacy of the two types of ORS was compared in terms of ORS intake, stool output, change in hematocrit reading, serum specific gravity, and increase in body weight. At the end of the first 24 h of treatment, a 50% reduction in ORS intake and stool output was observed in the 47 patients randomly assigned to receive rice ORS as compared with the 46 patients who received glucose ORS. During the second 24 h of treatment, a significant reduction in the stool output was noticed in the glucose ORS group, making the efficacy of glucose ORS equal to that of rice ORS. The study suggests that normal food can impart some of the superiority of "super" ORS to standard glucose ORS with regard to reduction of stool volume.
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