Remember the days when you would see the doctor, they would send a urine culture to the lab to confirm that you had a UTI and you walked out with a prescription which completely got rid of your infection?

Those days are gone and we are now on our own to find new ways to manage these infections.

A recent clinical analysis from in the journal Microbiology Research outlines why UTI’s have become so difficult to deal with these days.  The comparison below of “Today’s UTI” to the “Simple UTI” of a few years ago illustrates how complex these infections have become.

The authors started by exploding the long-held belief that the “urobiome” is sterile and is only occasionally attacked by an infectious bacteria.  Instead, they described an environment in which many different stains of bacteria are continuously circulating, some good and some bad.

The challenge, as they described it, is how to maintain the right balance of good and bad.  This is especially difficult when traditional testing methods do not produce accurate results, and the bacteria have learned how to outsmart the antibiotic drugs.

24 Types of UTI-Causing Bacteria

As shown below, there are 24 types of UTI-causing bacteria.  The majority (80%) are classified as gram-negative bacteria.  These bacteria are the most virulent and most difficult to clear up with antibiotics today, due to over-prescribing.  A small percentage are gram-positive bacteria which are usually acquired in a hospital setting.  These bacteria are still relatively easy to clear up with antibiotics.

Only 2 Effective Oral Antibiotics Today

Table 2 shows the 22 available antibiotics to treat gram-negative bacteria.  It is apparent that very few are currently effective at clearing up UTIs today, which is why your UTI keeps coming back.  Also, the majority of  the remaining effective antibiotics must be given with an IV (blue bars).  There are only 2 oral antibiotics which are effective: Nitrofurantoin and Fosfomycin.

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The Article Raises Alarm Bells, Recommends Reducing Reliance on Antibiotics

Doctor dispensing antibiotics

Conclusions in this Microbiology Research article about where things are headed are grim, and suggest that we need to reduce reliance on antibiotics to get this problem under control.

  • “Transmissible resistance in Enterobacteriaceae is now emerging against colistin with the potential to rapidly spread. This development means that our drug of last resort for treating infections caused by multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria is failing, and infection with these multidrug-resistant strains might, therefore, be untreatable with currently available antibiotics.” 
  • “We are facing a future in which combination therapy for UTI treatment will be routine, as resistance rates to single agents rise to unacceptable levels worldwide and untreatable UTIs present a real concern.” 
  • “To control this crisis in antimicrobial resistance, nonantibiotic approaches are crucial in providing a means of reducing symptoms without resorting to antibiotic use.”

Consumers Are Left To Manage Their Own UTIs Today

Paradoxically, the more complex that the urobiome and its’ associated testing and treatment options become, the more the consumer is left on their own to look for help in getting better.

Most doctors are sticking to FDA guidelines and only recommending antibiotics which is just makes things worse; some are also recommending Advanced DNA Testing and natural product alternatives.

Consider New DNA Testing 

The article suggests that the traditional urine culture is no longer enough.  Chronic UTI sufferers should seek out the Advanced DNA testing to get a more definitive report on all of the possible bacteria and fungi which may be causing their recurring symptoms.  Take a look at a sample report here.

These tests which had been prohibitively expensive five years ago ($2500+) are now available to directly to consumers.  A kit can be sent to your home for $199 and a report delivered to your email within 48 hours; learn more about MYUTI here.

Seek Alternatives To Antibiotics 

The following items were mentioned in the article as effective in the fight against E. Coli infections, which are still the most difficult to treat:

  • Vaginal Probiotics: “One of the key natural defense mechanisms against UTI is the presence of Lactobacillus in the vaginal and urethral areas” 
  • D-Mannose powder “Almost all uropathogenic strains of E. coli express type 1 fimbriae, which bind to mannose-like receptors.” 
  • Cranberry PAC’s “Cranberries contain fructose, which has been found to have a role in inhibiting the adherence of E. coli with type 1 fimbriae to urothelial cell receptors in vitro, and proanthocyanidin s(PAC’s), which affect adherence of P fimbriated E. coli.” 
  • Estrogen cream or insert: “Lack of estrogen in postmenopausal women also decreases Lactobacillus abundance in the urobiome…increasing the prevalence of infection and frequency of antibiotic treatment. Allowing such women access to estrogen therapy can aid in postmenopausal issues, including increasing Lactobacillus proliferation within the urogenital microbiome.”