“Also, improvement was often defined microbiologically, often something like a decrease from 105 colony-forming units to 104, which is never something we would use today.”
The study was conducted in Geneva, Poland, and Israel. It randomized 512 women with an uncomplicated lower UTI to either 5 days of thrice-daily nitrofurantoin 100 mg or to a single 3-gram dose of fosfomycin. The women returned for clinical exam and urine culture at 14 and 28 days after they completed their treatment.
The primary outcome was 28-day clinical response. Success was defined as complete resolution of symptoms, a characterization that Dr. Huttner and her colleagues chose carefully. Many UTI studies include “improvement” in the clinical picture as part of a successful response. Dr. Huttner disagreed with that. “Our patients don’t want a partial response. They don’t want just an improvement. They want complete resolution of their symptoms.”
Failure was defined as the need for additional antibiotics or a change in antibiotic treatment. There was also an “indeterminate” category, for the small minority of patients who still felt some mild symptoms but were without microbiological signs of infection.
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