Journal Article

Antibiotic prescribing for acute and recurrent cystitis in primary care: a 4 year descriptive study

Laura Galatti, Aurelio Sessa, Giampiero Mazzaglia, Serena Pecchioli, Alessandro Rossi, Claudio Cricelli, Gian Carlo Schito, Giuseppe Nicoletti and Achille P. Caputi

in Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Published on behalf of British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Volume 57, issue 3, pages 551-556
Published in print March 2006 | ISSN: 0305-7453
Published online January 2006 | e-ISSN: 1460-2091 | DOI:
Antibiotic prescribing for acute and recurrent cystitis in primary care: a 4 year descriptive study

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  • Medical Oncology
  • Critical Care


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Objectives: To explore the antibiotic prescribing pattern for cystitis and the patient-related variables associated with prescription during a 4 year period among Italian general practitioners (GPs).

Methods: We obtained information from the ‘Health Search Database’ (HSD), an Italian general practice research database. From a total sample of 457 672 eligible patients aged >16 years registered up to December 2002, we included those whose diagnoses could be classified as acute (uncomplicated and complicated) and recurrent cystitis. Patients' features and prevalence of antibiotic users were assessed.

Results: Of 35 129 cases diagnosed during the period 1999–2002, 96.0% of them were acute cystitis (39.2% recorded as uncomplicated). The prevalence of cases with acute complicated and uncomplicated cystitis slightly increased during the 4 year period, whereas it remained stable for recurrent cystitis. Most of the cystitis cases reported no diagnostic tests. More than 70% of patients were prescribed with at least one antibiotic, with a 4-fold increased risk of antibiotic use for acute cystitis throughout the study period. The prevalence of antibiotic users reached 86.2% for both acute uncomplicated and complicated cystitis in 2002, and 81.5% for recurrent cystitis. Fluoroquinolones represented the most common antibiotics being prescribed although they markedly decreased during these years. Fosfomycin trometamol use increased dramatically, becoming the first choice for any type of cystitis.

Conclusions: Data indicate an evident rise in antibiotic use mostly related to fosfomycin trometamol. They also indicate that such a prescriptive trend finds confirmation from the available evidence for acute uncomplicated cystitis, although the management of recurrent cystitis could be further improved.

Keywords: urinary tract infections; general practice; prescribing practice

Journal Article.  3550 words. 

Subjects: Medical Oncology ; Critical Care

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