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Thread: Effect of Cranberry Pills to Prevent and Treat Urinary Tract Infection among Persons with Spinal Cord Injury

  1. #1

    Effect of Cranberry Pills to Prevent and Treat Urinary Tract Infection among Persons with Spinal Cord Injury

    This was presented at the ASIA conference in Miami this year as well:

    Effect of Cranberry Pills to Prevent and Treat Urinary Tract Infection among Persons with Spinal Cord Injury

    In 1998, the University of Alabama at Birmingham received federal funds for the Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (UAB-RRTC) on Secondary Conditions of Spinal Cord Injury. One of the purposes of the UAB-RRTC is to conduct research and provide a means for dissemination of research results. Results from these research activities are now available.

    One area of research focus includes urological issues to improve the general health and well-being of individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI). Over the years, there has been a lot said about the use of cranberry juice to treat and reduce the incidence of urinary tract infection (UTI). However, there was no previous research activities to test this theory in individuals with SCI.

    The source of UTI is bacteria. Bacteria are a group or colony of tiny, microscopic single-celled life forms that live in the body. These bacteria can quickly multiply and lead to disease or infection.

    It is normal for most individuals with SCI to have bacteria in their urine that can be identified by a urine culture. However, the bacteria are usually not considered a medical problem unless the individual shows signs or symptoms of illness. This study is important because the presence of bacteria puts individuals with SCI at an increased risk for developing UTI. In fact, complications due to UTI are the #1 medical concern and more likely to affect the overall health and health care costs of individuals with SCI.

    Objective

    This research project looked at the effectiveness of cranberry pills to reduce or kill bacteria found in the urine of individuals with SCI.

    Participants

    All participants in this study were individuals with SCI who were living at home, more than 1 year post injury and managing their neurogenic bladder through intermittent catheterization or condom catheter. Participants did not receive antibiotics for 7 days prior to enrollment, and they could not take antibiotics, drink cranberry juice, or do anything to prevent a UTI during their participation in this study.

    Methods

    Each participant was randomly placed into 1 of 2 groups. One group was given a pill with the cranberry extract, and the other group was given a placebo (sugar) pill. A laboratory test verified that the cranberry abstract contained the presumed active ingredient of cranberry juice. Participants were asked to take 2 pills in the morning and 2 pills at night with water for 6 months. Neither the researchers nor participants knew who was taking the cranberry extract or placebo.

    Participants provided urine samples at the time of the initial clinic visit and monthly for 6 months. Microbiological data were evaluated using analysis of variance with repeated measures. All participants showed more than 10,000 bacterial colonies per milliliter of urine when first enrolled in the study.

    Results

    There were 23 individuals with SCI who received the cranberry extract while another 20 individuals with SCI received placebo. There were no differences or trends detected over time between the two groups with respect to number of urine specimens with 10,000 bacteria colonies per milliliter, types and numbers of different bacterial species, numbers of urinary leukocyte counts or urinary pH.

    Conclusion

    This study did not show that cranberry pills offer any benefit in reducing the number of bacteria in the urine of individuals with spinal cord injury.

    © 1998-2003 University of Alabama at Birmingham

    You can see this on-line at:
    http://www.spinalcord.uab.edu/show.a...1&return=21556

    (KLD)

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  3. #3
    Senior Member Jeff's Avatar
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    Rutgers has a whole center to study the beneficial effects of cranberries and blueberies.

    http://cook.rutgers.edu/~bluecran/me...searchpage.htm

    Obviously, the UTI prevention benefits don't translate well for persons with SCI. But, it can't really be harmful unless you're wasting money that could be put to much better use.

    What I do is simply use cranberry powder in much higher doses than what has been proven ineffective. No one can tell me it doesn't help, lol. And the anti-oxidant value is always there.

    In order to beat the cost of supplements you can order a pound of the powder for under $20 here:

    www.herbalcom.com

    ~See you at the SCIWire-used-to-be-paralyzed Reunion ~

  4. #4
    Member 00091073's Avatar
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    reasurch smesurch who cares. all I know is my quality of life has improved ten fold becouse of taking 2000 mg of each vit c and cranberry pills. I used to have a uti a month until I took these suppliments now I have not had a uti since. Cranberry pills simply work!!!

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    Early on they tried giving me sulfa drugs to take care of the somewhat constant UTI I had. Problem was my stomock rebeled at the sulfa and I had it coming out both ends badly.I finnally got the UTI under control and I went looking, talking to all. A DR. said something about cranberry juice and I went to drinking juice as 75 % of my intake. I hated the taste but was asle to get everything under control.I started looking at content and found the percentage of cranberry from 5% to 27%.....My luck I was drinking the 5%....I found one that I liked and started cutting back. I now drink 6-8 ounces, twice a day. I have had 2 UTI's in 4 years and they were my own fault. Both times I was out in the mall, had dirty hands and didn't wash well BEFORE cathing.
    Cranberry works well for me.If the pills or extract work for you, GREAT....Others will benefit from our input...
    PHIL I.

  6. #6
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    Cranberry pills didn't work for me. What I'm buying from Canada is Mandelamine which i'm taking twice daily (500mg)and has worked wonders.

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    It is my understanding that cranberry extract is only effective against E coli bacteria. The published results were incomplete as they included no info on dosage and no info on species of bacteria. Paul I

  8. #8
    Guys and Gals I must say that Cranberry extract (I believe) does help with the prevention of/and or treatment of UTI's. I've personally experienced this in and out of the hospital. When I was in acute care,I had a UtI every three weeks or so.(Acute care 9 weeks).
    After going to rehab I had 1 UtI during another 9 week stay.During that time I consumed alot of cranberry juice,1 UtI during that time.
    After discharge, I had 3 more UTI's in a 2 month period.Jan-March.BTW it resulted in extreme AD BP 210/140 After treating the UTI, I started taking 1 sulfa drug in the morning,2 v c's daily and 6 305mg cran caps daily.Four months UTI free,no AD (thank god). Nothing changed, except the cran.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Max's Avatar
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    No Benefit From Cranberry Pills

    No Benefit From Cranberry Pills
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    NO BENEFIT FROM CRANBERRY PILLS
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    http://www.newswise.com/articles/view/?id=500173

    Does cranberry extract help prevent urinary tract infections (UTIs)? That's a popular notion, but it doesn't hold up in a population that is prone to UTIs.
    Does cranberry extract help prevent urinary tract infections (UTIs)? That's a popular notion, but it doesn't hold up in a population that is prone to UTIs. UAB clinical pathologist Ken Waites, M.D., directed a study of individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) at the university's Rehabilitation Research and Training Center. "Complications due to UTI are a primary medical concern and more likely to affect the overall health and health care costs of people with SCI," says Waites. Forty-three patients were randomized to receive cranberry extract or placebo. "Our study did not show that cranberry pills offer any benefit in reducing the number of bacteria in the urine of these individuals." .


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    © 2003 Newswise. All Rights Reserved.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator Sue Pendleton's Avatar
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    My PCP and gynocologist push the pills. Those pills kill my stomach. I'll have a glass now and then but it's just in rotation with other juices. Phil, I also have problems with the sulfa based drugs. How do handle Bactrim? I mean I can take these meds and they do work but I always ask for whatever else will work first because of the side effects. Cephlosporin types also do a number on me. Basically, I've found drinking more water, decaf coffee and other, preferably, non-sugar sweetened drinks and caths more often are the only preventatives that really work.

    Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow."

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