Objective: Urinary tract infections still represent a significant bother for women and result in high costs to the health system. D-mannose is a simple sugar; it seems able to hinder bacteria adhesion to the urothelium. The present study aimed to determine whether D-mannose alone is effective in treating acute urinary tract infections in women and its possible utility in the management of recurrences.
Patients and methods: This is a pilot study, performed between April 2014 and July 2015 at Department of Gynaecological Obstetrics and Urologic Sciences of "Sapienza" University of Rome. A D-mannose compound was administered twice daily for 3 days and then once a day for 10 days. Changes in patients' symptoms, the therapeutic effects and changes in quality of life (QoL) were evaluated clinically and using a specifically validated questionnaire (UTISA). After described treatment, patients were randomized in receiving or not prophylaxis in the next 6 months.
Results: Mean UTISA scores recorded after completing the treatment, compared with baseline scores, showed a significant improvement of the majority of symptoms (p < 0.05). D-mannose seemed to have had a significant positive effect on UTIs' resolution and QoL improvement (p = 0.0001). As prophylactic agent administered for 6 months, it showed promising results (4.5% vs. 33.3% recurrences in treated and untreated patients respectively).
Conclusions: The results of this study suggest that D-mannose can be an effective aid in acute cystitis management and also a successful prophylactic agent in a selected population; however, more studies will certainly be needed to confirm the results of our pilot study.