Urinary tract infections (UTIs) rarely hit as a one-off. They come in painful cycles, affecting either the kidneys (acute pyelonephritis), bladder (cystitis), or urethra (urethritis). According to Healthline, UTIs are the second-most common infection that humans can contract and are responsible for approximately eight million doctor visits every year. In fact, one in five women suffers from recurring UTIs, says OB-GYN women’s medical center, and these infections are distressingly painful.
Unfortunately, not all UTIs are easy to treat as they don’t all respond to antibiotic treatments. People around the world are repeatedly told that there is little they can do to counteract their UTIs. Without available effective prevention options, these UTIs have a devastating effect on many lives. Worryingly, Science Alert reports that at least 25% of UTI patients do not receive the treatment that they need.
This is where Uqora comes in. Uqora offers urinary health products that help over 60,000 customers to stay healthy. Their renowned product range improves urinary health. With a physician-backed philosophy built on clinical research and proven success, they are now investing in human clinical trials on UTI prevention. As part of Uqora’s mission to provide proactive urinary health solutions, their upcoming clinical research includes a rigorous trial on cystitis prevention. This trial will take place later this year in collaboration with medical experts from George Washington University.
The George Washington Study will evaluate the effectiveness of Uqora’s products on UTI prevention, with the aim to reduce the recurrence of cystitis in women who have a history of UTIs but are otherwise healthy. The study is an integral part of Uqora’s long-term mission to advance the prevention and diagnosis of UTIs.
Uqora Clinical Trial: The George Washington Study
The George Washington Study will follow another Uqora clinical trial that is currently in the active study phase. During this study, ‘Uqora and Urinary Health in Women with Recurring UTI’, 360 women who have been treated with antibiotics for at least two UTIs over the last six months are taking either a placebo or active product. The trial is due for completion in August 2020.
Meanwhile, Dr. Michael Hsieh (Director of Research at the Children’s National Hospital, Director of the Clinic for Adult and Adolescent Pediatric Onset Urology, and Associate Professor at George Washington University), is preparing for the second randomized clinical trial on Uqora’s products.
The George Washington Study will aim to further prove Uqora’s product efficacy. Two-hundred-and-forty women will be selected and split into two groups of 120. One group will take a placebo study product while the other will take an active study product daily for twelve months. Subjects must be at least age 18 and healthy with no active cancer, immunosuppression, or current UTI symptoms.
The primary study outcome will be the frequency of recurring cystitis episodes during a 12-month period. These episodes will be defined by the presence of at least one UTI symptom, such as painful urination, frequency, urgency, and/or suprapubic pain. Subjects must also test positive in a urine culture, having a minimum of 103 CFU/mL uropathogens in a midstream urine culture.
Mayoclinic describes the following additional symptoms of UTIs:
- A burning sensation while urinating
- Cloudy urine
- Blood in urine – often red-, pink-, or brown-tinged
- Urine with a strong odour
Subjects must also have reported a minimum of three symptomatic episodes of cystitis within the last twelve months, and these episodes must have resulted in a clinician visit and at least one episode that had been culture-confirmed. The clinical trial will be conducted with the urology clinic’s existing patient population.
Unlike other clinical trials on UTI prevention, the George Washington Study proposes to combine two study products that may be able to individually prevent cystitis. A combination supplement could be particularly effective.
Recurring Urinary Tract Infections
UTIs occur when harmful bacteria enter the urinary tract and cause inflammation of the kidneys, bladder, ureters, or urethra – parts of the body that urine passes through. These infections are usually the result of one or more of the following conditions or circumstances.
- Kidney or bladder stones
- Urinary tract surgery
- Frequent or intense sexual activity
- Sexual intercourse with multiple or new partners
- Having a catheter
- Certain types of birth control
- The menopause
- Wearing tight lingerie
- Poor hygiene
- Bowel incontinence
- Long-term immobility
- Suppressed immune system
- Use of spermicides
- Heavy use of antibiotics
- A urinary tract abnormality
As these conditions and activities are usually long-term, UTIs often recur. The infection can spread from one part of the urinary tract to another or may recur even after treatment.
Funding and Researching UTI Prevention
Finding effective UTI treatments and prevention options is especially important due to the rising prevalence of antibiotic resistance in the bacteria that causes UTIs. Everyday Health explains that up to 90% of UTIs are caused by E. coli, a type of bacteria that thrives in the intestines.
Antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest health challenges of our time. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that 2.8 million people contract antibiotic-resistant infections every year in America, killing over 35,000 people annually.
Despite the challenges associated with UTIs and antibiotic resistance, UTI prevention, diagnosis, and treatments have been hugely underfunded and under-researched for years.
‘UTIs are very common – most girls and women, and some boys and men, will have at least one UTI in their lifetime, and half of that group have multiple infections. Despite this, UTI research is under-funded,’ says Dr. Hsieh.
Funding research into how we can prevent UTIs will allow medical scientists to develop antibiotic and non-antibiotic treatments for a range of infections that are currently difficult to treat and manage.
‘UTIs have been understudied and have not received sufficient clinical attention for several reasons,’ adds Dr Hsiech. ‘First, urologists are primarily surgeons, and UTIs are mostly managed medically. Second, there are few alternatives available to treat UTIs besides antibiotics, which can be frustrating for urologists and patients alike.’
Chronic UTIs are devastatingly painful, and patients are desperate for new approaches to prevent infections, yet few studies have been conducted into UTI preventative measures so far. Existing research focuses mainly on vaccines and mannosides (small-molecule drugs) as preventative measures – or considers the biology of UTIs. The George Washington Study aims to take this a step further and progress development into successfully preventing such UTIs.
Uqora Clinical Trial Updates
The George Washington Study will take place at George Washington University Medical Faculty Associates Urology Clinic, Washington D.C. Recruitment will open in late 2020 and complete in late 2021.
Uqora will soon also be running another clinical trial for women with recurring UTIs in collaboration with Rush University Medical College. These clinical trials are essential for the development of new products that will eliminate the severe discomfort and pain that accompanies UTIs.
If you would like to stay informed about Uqora’s clinical trials, you can sign up for updates at https://uqora.com/pages/clinical-research.You can also explore Uqora’s range of urinary tract health supplements at https://uqora.com.