Background: Women with acute uncomplicated urine infection are usually treated with antibiotics. One trial has demonstrated that delayed antibiotic treatment offered without symptom relief results in a modest reduction in antibiotic use. There is some evidence that ibuprofen provides symptom relief and reduces antibiotic use. Uva-ursi, a herbal product, has a traditional use for urinary infection symptom relief. We set out to test: in adult women with suspected UTI who accept the delayed prescription strategy: Do NSAIDs or uva-ursi (a herbal product) provide relief from urinary symptoms and reduce antibiotic use.
Methods/design: Adult women with suspected urinary tract infection presenting to primary care will be randomised using a factorial trial design in which patients will be randomised to one of two interventions as below: Group 1 - Uva-ursi + advice to take ibuprofen Group 2 - Placebo + advice to take ibuprofen Group 3 - Uva-ursi + no advice to take ibuprofen Group 4 - Placebo + no advice to take ibuprofen Patients and physicians will be blinded to the randomised group for the herb. The main outcome is symptom severity at days 2-4 recorded in a validated, self-report diary used in previous studies. Secondary outcomes include antibiotic use and symptom duration. In total the trial will require 328 patients in order to achieve at least 90% power for the primary endpoint and 80% for the secondary endpoint. In accordance with CONSORT guidelines all comparative analyses will be conducted on an intention-to-treat basis using SPSS or similar package.
Discussion: The outcomes from this trial have the potential to modify the current approach to the management of acute urinary symptoms with less dependence on the use of antibiotics.
Trial registration: ISRCTN registry, ID: ISRCTN43397016 . Registered on 11 February 2015.
Keywords: Antibiotic resistance; Ibuprofen; NSAID; Urinary tract infection; Uva-ursi.