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Chinese herbal medicine for treating recurrent urinary tract infections in women

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, June 2015
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  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (92nd percentile)
  • Good Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (69th percentile)

Mentioned by

1 news outlet
12 tweeters
6 Facebook pages
2 Google+ users


33 Dimensions

Readers on

150 Mendeley
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Chinese herbal medicine for treating recurrent urinary tract infections in women
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, June 2015
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd010446.pub2
Pubmed ID

Andrew Flower, Li-Qiong Wang, George Lewith, Jian Ping Liu, Qing Li


Acute urinary tract infection (UTI) is a common bacterial infection that affects 40% to 50% of women. Between 20% and 30% of women who have had a UTI will experience a recurrence, and around 25% will develop ongoing recurrent episodes with implications for individual well-being and healthcare costs. Prophylactic antibiotics can prevent recurrent UTIs but there are growing concerns about microbial resistance, side effects from treatment and lack of long-term benefit. Consequently, alternative treatments are being investigated. Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) has a recorded history of treating UTI symptoms and more recent research suggests a potential role in the management of recurrent UTIs. This review aimed to evaluate CHM for recurrent UTI. This review assessed the benefits and harms of CHM for the treatment of recurrent UTIs in adult women, both as a stand-alone therapy and in conjunction with other pharmaceutical interventions. We searched the Cochrane Kidney and Transplant's Specialised Register to 7 May 2015 through contact with the Trials Search Co-ordinator, using search terms relevant to this review. We also searched AMED, CINAHL and the Chinese language electronic databases Chinese BioMedical Literature Database (CBM), China Network on Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), VIP and Wan Fang Databases to July 2014. We included randomised controlled trials (RCTs) comparing treatments using CHM with either an inactive placebo or conventional biomedical treatment. RCTs comparing different CHM strategies and treatments were eligible for inclusion. Quasi-randomised studies were excluded. Data extraction was carried out independently by two authors. Where more than one publication of one study existed, these were grouped and the publication with the most complete data was used in the analyses. Where relevant outcomes were only published in earlier versions these data were used. All meta-analyses were performed using relative risk (RR) for dichotomous outcomes with 95% confidence intervals (CI). We included seven RCTs that involved a total of 542 women; of these, five recruited post-menopausal women (aged from 56 to 70 years) (422 women). We assessed all studies to be at high risk of bias. Meta-analyses comparing the overall effectiveness of treatments during acute phases of infection and rates of recurrence were conducted. Analysis of three studies involving 282 women that looked at CHM versus antibiotics suggested that CHM had a higher rate of effectiveness for acute UTI (RR 1.21, 95% CI 1.11 to 33) and reduced recurrent UTI rates (RR 0.28, 95% CI 0.09 to 0.82). Analysis of two studies involving 120 women that compared CHM plus antibiotics versus antibiotics alone found the combined intervention had a higher rate of effectiveness for acute UTI (RR 1.24, 95% CI 1.04 to 1.47) and resulted in lower rates of recurrent infection six months after the study (RR 0.53, 95% CI 0.35 to 0.80).One study comparing different CHM treatments found Er Xian Tang was more effective in treating acute infection in post-menopausal women than San Jin Pian (80 women: RR 1.28, 95% CI 1.03 to 1.57). Analysis showed that active CHM treatments specifically formulated for recurrent UTI were more effective in reducing infection incidence than generic CHM treatments that were more commonly used for acute UTI (RR 0.40, 95% CI 0.21 to 0.77).Only two studies undertook to report adverse events; neither reported the occurrence of any adverse events. Evidence from seven small studies suggested that CHM as an independent intervention or in conjunction with antibiotics may be beneficial for treating recurrent UTIs during the acute phase of infection and may reduce the recurrent UTI incidence for at least six months post-treatment. CHM treatments specifically formulated for recurrent UTI may be more effective than herbal treatments designed to treat acute UTI. However, the small number and poor quality of the included studies meant that it was not possible to formulate robust conclusions on the use of CHM for recurrent UTI in women either alone or as an adjunct to antibiotics.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 12 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 150 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 150 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 27 18%
Student > Bachelor 20 13%
Student > Ph. D. Student 19 13%
Researcher 17 11%
Student > Doctoral Student 16 11%
Other 22 15%
Unknown 29 19%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 48 32%
Nursing and Health Professions 19 13%
Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Science 9 6%
Social Sciences 8 5%
Economics, Econometrics and Finance 6 4%
Other 22 15%
Unknown 38 25%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 20. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 24 September 2017.
All research outputs
of 12,527,219 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 8,923 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 234,339 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 237 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 12,527,219 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 94th percentile: it's in the top 10% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 8,923 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 21.2. This one has done well, scoring higher than 82% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 234,339 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 92% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 237 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 69% of its contemporaries.