The World of Chronic UTI Sufferers – 15 Million Women and Growing
An estimated 49 million women had a UTI in the past year and over 15 million (33%) are suffering from chronic urinary tract infections (UTI’s), which means that they get 3 or more debilitating infections every year. And they are in their doctor’s office every other month with the same complaint: “Why can’t you give me something to get rid of this infection?”
1 in 3 Women suffer 3 or more UTIs In a Year
Antibiotics Are No Longer A “Silver Bullet”
For the past decade, the medical community has acknowledged that antibiotics are no longer “the silver bullets” that they used to be when one dose immediately cleared up this type of infection. Because antibiotics have been overprescribed, the E Coli bacteria causing these infections have learned how to hide, grow and emerge again once the antibiotics are no longer present, causing a recurrence.
Simple Infections Are Becoming Death Sentences
And for elderly patients who often have no symptoms, this vicious cycle can lead to serious kidney infection, delirium, sepsis and even death.
In 2019, over 35,000 people died from antibiotic resistant infections, which caused the CDC to declare this “antibiotics resistance” a national crisis; read more here.
No New Solutions Being Developed and Doctors Unwilling To Change
Naturally, COVID-19 has commanded the full attention of the pharmaceutical and biotech companies over the past year, but this means that no new antibiotics are being developed to fight these “superbugs”.
Couple this lack of development with doctors’ unwillingness to change what they’ve always done regarding antibiotics prescriptions for UTIs.
When asked what he sees happening in the future in view of doctors’ reliance on antibiotics, Dr. Thomas Finucane, an MD at Johns Hopkins, said:
“Glacial change. Everybody has seen a delirious patient have bacteriuria, get antibiotics, and get better. The antibiotic treatment of self-limited conditions is uniformly gratifying. It’s very deeply embedded in the psyche of the docs, and the patients, and the patients’ families. So, all of those factors add up against any radical change.”
Patients Are Taking Matters Into Their Own Hands
Frustrated with being forced to live with the unbearable symptoms of this infection, millions of women across the country have banded together into support and discussion groups, and are sharing their stories about how they were able to finally get some answers and relief. Having gone almost to the ends of the earth to find help, these women and men are significantly more enlightened about UTIs than most doctors.
As you will see, they have become very familiar with all of the language, the diagnostic tests and tools, reports, types of bacteria, differences in antibiotics, co-morbidities which may be causing their UTIs and how to manage their UTIs with a combination of traditional and alternative medicine.
For example, they can tell you whether their infection is a “relapse” or a “reinfection” and what their bacteria “colony count” is.
Five Key Takeaways From Women Who Have Been Through It All
Most of the women that we’ve listened to have been living with this condition for years. They know “what works” and “what doesn’t”. Doctors are beginning to conclude that it’s time to listen to what they have to say.
“We have to consider the probability that what patients describe may be a most valid representation of their plight and we should recognize that.” – Dr. James Malone-Lee
Following are the five insights that we have gleaned from their conversations online in various discussion and support groups.