The Improving Outcomes of UTI Management in Long-Term Care Project (IOU) Consensus Guidelines for the Diagnosis of Uncomplicated Cystitis in Nursing Home Residents

J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2018 Sep;19(9):765-769.e3. doi: 10.1016/j.jamda.2018.05.030. Epub 2018 Jul 20.


Objectives: To identify a set of signs and symptoms most likely to indicate uncomplicated cystitis in noncatheterized nursing home residents ≥65 years of age using consensus-based methods informed by a literature review.

Design: Literature review and modified Delphi survey with strict inclusion criteria.

Setting and participants: Expert panel of 20 physicians certified in geriatric medicine and/or medical direction, actively practicing in post-acute and long-term care settings.

Methods: The authors performed a literature review to produce a comprehensive list of potential signs and symptoms of presumptive uncomplicated cystitis, including nonspecific "quality control" items deemed unlikely to indicate uncomplicated cystitis. The expert panel rated their agreement for each sign/symptom using a 5-point Likert-type scale (1 = strongly disagree to 5 = strongly agree). Agreed upon signs and symptoms were summarized using a diagnostic algorithm for easy clinical use.

Results: The literature review identified 16 signs and symptoms that were evaluated in 3 Delphi survey rounds. The response rate was 100% for round 1 and 95% for the second 2 rounds. Consensus agreement for inclusion was achieved for dysuria on round 1 with exclusion of the 3 quality controls, and "offensive smelling urine." Consensus in the second round was reached for including 4 additional items (gross hematuria, suprapubic pain, urinary frequency, and urinary urgency). Round 3 evaluated dysuria alone and combinations of symptoms. Consensus that dysuria alone is sufficient for diagnosis of cystitis was not reached.

Conclusions/implications: The panel identified 5 signs and symptoms likely indicative of uncomplicated cystitis in nursing home residents and developed a diagnostic algorithm that can be used to promote antibiotic stewardship in nursing homes. Given similarities in populations, the algorithm may also be applicable to the older adult and the broader post-acute/long-term care populations.

Keywords: UTI; Urinary tract infection; cystitis; diagnostic guidelines; nursing facilities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cystitis / diagnosis*
  • Delphi Technique
  • Female
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Homes for the Aged*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Urinary Tract Infections* / diagnosis
  • Urinary Tract Infections* / drug therapy