open access: Editorial - Cranberry for Urinary Tract Infection? CAM Ovarian Cancer and Us OVARIAN CANCER and US Ovarian Cancer and Us

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Thursday, October 27, 2016

open access: Editorial - Cranberry for Urinary Tract Infection? CAM



The JAMA Network (open access)

....The continuing promotion of cranberry use to prevent recurrent UTI in the popular press or online advice seems inconsistent with the reality of repeated negative studies or positive studies compromised by methodological shortcomings. Any continued promotion of the use of cranberry products seems to go beyond available scientific evidence and rational reasoning. Some of this conviction is likely an interest of individuals or groups to promote the use of natural health products for clinical benefits, allowing avoidance of medical interventions and, potentially, giving women who experience recurrent UTI an element of personal control in managing their problem. The current emphasis on antimicrobial stewardship and limiting antimicrobial use whenever possible also may have some influence in the continued endorsement of cranberry juice or tablets as a nonantimicrobial strategy for management of UTI.
What should be the current view of the role of cranberry products for prevention of recurrent UTI in women? The evidence, further supported by the study by Juthani-Mehta et al in an important population, is convincing that cranberry products should not be recommended as a medical intervention for the prevention of UTI. A person may, of course, choose to use cranberry juice or capsules for whatever reason she or he wishes. However, clinicians should not be promoting cranberry use by suggesting that there is proven, or even possible, benefit. Clinicians who encourage such use are doing their patients a disservice. Recurrent UTI is a common problem that is distressing to patients and because it is so frequent and costly for the health care system. It is time to identify other potential approaches for management. This certainly must include a wiser use of antimicrobial therapy for syndromes of recurrent UTI in women in long-term care facilities. Other possible interventions to explore in this and other populations may include, among other approaches, adherence inhibitors or immunologic interventions. Intellectual discussions and clinical trial activity should be redirected to identify and evaluate other innovative antimicrobial and nonantimicrobial approaches. It is time to move on from cranberries.

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