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Does cranberry juice actually work?

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by Frances1985, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. Hi everyone,
    After getting over a UTI and a kidney stone, it looks like the UTI is back. Woke up with back pain, a slight temp and a racing pulse today so went to walk in health centre. Urine test showed blood and pus cells (nice...) but the doctor didn't give me any antibiotics as it hasn't been that long since I took the last lot. It must have developed in the last few days as the urine test I had on Tuesday at my GP was pretty much clear. Anyway, the doctor I saw today told me to drink cranberry juice, but I have been doing this and lone behold it hasn't worked. However, to be fair I have only been drinking it for a couple of weeks. Is it the kind of thing you have to drink for a long time for it to work?
  2. Ahh sorry to hear that, you must be feeling really miserable. I'not convinced by the cranberry juice and actually find when I have a uti it makes the burning pain when passing urine sooo much worse. Have you tried waterfall D Mannose? A friend of mine swears by it and buys it online.
    If your symptoms don't improve probably best to head back to the docs with another sample, just wondering if the doc actually sent it off to be cultured or did he just do the ******** test because I've had samples being clear with the ******** test yet when cultured a bacteria did show up. I've also learnt that the morning sample is much more reliable as if you're drinking loads which is recommended with a uti then the test sample may be so dilute that the bacteria may not be picked up.
    Hope you're feeling better soon!
  3. Thank you travel n teach. I am wondering whether the sample I gave to the doctor the other day was diluted as my appointment was in the evening and I'd been drinking a lot througout the day. However, I was feeling a lot better when I visited the GP on Tuesday. Today I definitely don't feel right and lone behold the urine sample (given this morning) had a few nasties in it. It's just typical that this has to happen the day before going back to work!

    I have never tried waterfall d Mannose. In fact, I have never heard of it. Thanks for the suggestion, I'll definitely look into it :).
  4. Oh dear Frances. I'm so sorry you've got this problem. As you know, I too am recovering from a uti, hot on the heels of a kidney stone. I am still getting weird pains in my bladder but I saw the doc on Friday and she did the dip strip test and said my wee was completely clear. She said I've got an irritable bladder and the pains are basically spasms as the bladder settles down. I have to go back if they haven't stopped in 10 days or so. I'm slightly concerned about developing interstitial cystitis.
    I am now taking the Waterfall D-Mannose, to hopefully stave off a recurrence. I'm specially concerned as I'm going abroad next week for 4 days. I did ask the doc if I could take some antibiotics with me but she refused and was sure I'd be ok as long as I keep drinking lots (ha, ha!) I know I'm not going to be able to see a doctor when I'm abroad so the last thing I need is a recurrence of this wretched thing.
    The Mannose stuff is a sugar which works against E Coli infections (which account for 90% of utis). E Coli bacteria have little hairs which automatically attach themselves to simple sugars like mannose. The idea is you drink the sugar and the e coli attach to the sugar in your urine and you excrete them in your wee, thus preventing them from establishing themselves in the bladder lining. There is quite a lot of scientific evidence for this and lots of people, who have suffered chronic and recurrent infections for years, swear by it. I'm just taking it as a prevention, but some people actually take it to cure utis instead of using antibiotics - usually people who the antibiotics no longer work for due to resistence. Not sure if I'd risk self treatment like this but some people seem to.
    Cranberry has a different substance which supposedly prevents bacteria attaching to your bladder lining. There isnt much scientific evidence for this - it might help as a prevention with some people. However, there is some contra evidence that cranberry may encourage infection as it makes your urine more acidic, which is what e coli loves.
    If I were you I'd definitely go back to your doctor and demand they send your sample off to a lab to establish exactly what bug you have up there. It could just be they have you on the wrong tablets which isnt really killing it off properly.

  5. Thank you for your fantastic advice Mrs Mo. I hope you don't get any trouble when you go abroad. It sounds like the Mannose stuff is good, I'm definitely going to get some as I am so fed up of this! The thing that annoys me is that I had started to feel soooo much better. In fact, I felt like a different person before waking up today with the dreaded back pains. There are nowhere near as bad as the kidney stone pain but annoying nonetheless.
    I will ring my GP for another appointment. I have seen so many doctors the past few weeks it is verging on ridiculous lol!
  6. Just re-read your post Frances. Am I right in thinking the doc sent you away without any antibiotics, even though you still have an infection and have a very recent history of kidney stones/infection? Hmmm, not sure how ethical this is.
    I would definitely go to your GP surgery rather than walk-in centre. Definitely get them to do a lab test to see what bug you're dealing with. Ditch the cranberry if it doesnt work - it wont cure an existing uti anyway and if it is irritating your bladder then stop taking it. Have you tried the potassium citrate? Available over the counter - makes your wee less acidic and lessens the stinging.
    Hope you feel better soon!
  7. Hi again Mrs Mo,
    I went to the GP on Tuesday for a follow up to the kidney stone drama and to get a urine sample done (which was fine). Today I woke up with my pulse racing, a slight temp and back pains again. I didn't want to take any chances so went to the walk in centre where a urine test was done which showed (in the doctor's words) "a bit of pus and blood." Yuck. However, because I wasn't in lots of pain urinating, he said I didn't need antibiotics. He also said he was reluctant to give them to me because I'd been on Trimethoprim so recently. Will phone my GP tomorrow and beg for an appointment - normally you have to wait 2 weeks as it's a big, busy practice.
    Thank you - me too!
  8. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    Much more effective than Cranberry juice are the concentrated Cranberry tablets - you can buy them in Boots or Holland & Barrett.
    It stops cystitis when I feel the first tingles but it doesn't work when the infection has kicked in properly.
  9. Thanks bombay. I will get some of those to use in future, I can't quite believe I possibly have another infection only a few weeks after the last one! Will ring GP tomorrow to see if they can squeeze me in.
  10. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    You can take either 1 or 2 Cranberry tablets a day to keep infections at bay. If you had have 2 infections in quick succession then I would suggest taking them for a month or so.

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