The researchers found after treatment that seven women who received the probiotic had at least one urinary tract infection, compared with 13 of the women who received the placebo.
Although these results are promising they are not powerful enough to provide a definitive conclusion, Hooton pointed out. "The hope is that more definitive studies can be done," he said.
Hooton noted that the probiotic used in the study is not available yet and it will take a lot more testing before it is. Given that the probiotic is still in development there is no idea yet of what it would cost, assuming it is approved, he added.
Dr. Jennifer Wu, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, said that "we are using a lot of antibiotics these days and we are getting a lot more antibiotic resistance, so if we can find a new way to help prevent urinary tract infections that's non-antibiotic, it's really helpful."
In addition, Wu thinks this new treatment is a good idea. L. crispatus is essential for a healthy vagina, because it prevents bad bacteria from growing, she said.
Another expert, Dr. Yvonne K.P. Koch, an assistant professor of urology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, said that "this study holds some promise as to how we can help patients with these chronic recurrent infections."
For more information on urinary tract infection, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
SOURCES: Thomas M. Hooton, M.D., professor, clinical medicine, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; Yvonne K.P. Koch, M.D., assistant professor, urology, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; Jennifer Wu, M.D., obstetrician-gynecolog
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