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Management of Recurrent Urinary Tract Infections in Women: How Providers Can Improve the Patient Experience.

Urology 2021 May
OBJECTIVE: To provide guidance to providers on how to improve the patient experience for women with recurrent urinary tract infections (rUTIs).

METHODS: The recently updated 2019 American Urological Association (AUA) guidelines for recurrent uncomplicated acute cystitis and other contemporary publications pertaining to recurrent UTIs in women were reviewed. These data were used to summarize practice-based methodology to formulate recommendations with an emphasis on education to enhance the patient experience.

RESULTS: We summarize the guideline-based management of patients with rUTI and augment this with a patient-focused perspective to provide recommendations for how to best counsel patients regarding evaluation, treatment using antibiotic stewardship practices, and a comprehensive prevention plan. We focus on patient education as the foundation for successful provider-patient relationships as well as patient compliance with care pathways.

CONCLUSION: rUTIs are costly, time-consuming, and painful for patients. For providers, rUTIs represent a frustrating aspect of clinical care facing the balance of antibiotic stewardship with effective treatment and patient expectations with limited data supporting nonantibiotic therapies. Urologists have the skills and knowledge to provide this patient population with competent and compassionate care. By investing in these patients, being responsive to their concerns and offering education, patients will have a better overall experience with this chronic condition.

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