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D-Mannose for Urinary Tract Infection: Benefits, Side Effects and Dosage

What is D-Mannose?

D-Mannose is a naturally occurring sugar and is often used in the treatment of urinary tract infections. It is believed to make it hard for the bacteria causing urinary tract infections to attach themselves to the urinary tract. It occurs naturally in oranges, peaches, cranberries, mangoes, aloe vera, seaweed and apples.

D-mannose was previously used in the treatment of urinary tract infection in animals and is now being tested for treatment and prevention of urinary tract infections in humans. A study done in 2017 found that females who develop frequent urinary tract infections receive a low dose of antibiotics for a period of 6-12 months.(1) With long-term antibiotic use, the bacteria become resistant to the antibiotics. Therefore developing a nonantibiotic treatment for bacterial infections like urinary tract infections, D-Mannose can be a solution.

D-Mannose is also found in certain nutritional supplements such as cranberry, dandelion extract, hibiscus, probiotics, and rosehip.

What Does Science Say About D-Mannose and Its Effectiveness in Treating Urinary Tract Infection?

90 percent of urinary tract infection is caused by E.Coli bacteria.(2) As these bacteria enter the urinary tract they attach to the cells, grow, and cause infection.

On consuming food containing D-Mannose, it is eliminated through the kidney into the urinary tract. There it attaches to the E.Coli bacteria, detaching them from the cells where they may be causing infection.

A study done in 2013 evaluated the effect of D-Mannose in 308 females with frequent urinary tract infections. It was found that D-mannose worked as well as antibiotic nitrofurantoin in preventing the urinary tract infection over a 6 months period.(3)

Another study was done in 2014 that compared D-Mannose with antibiotic trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole for the treatment of urinary tract infection in 60 females.(4) It was found to not only treat the active infection but was effective in preventing additional infection.

One more study performed in 2016 tested the effect of D-Mannose in 43 women with active urinary tract infections. It was found that most females had improved symptoms at the end.(5)

Side Effects of D-Mannose

Most people do not observe any side effects after consuming D-Mannose, but some may experience loose stool or diarrhea.

Those with diabetes should speak with their doctor as D-Mannose is a natural sugar and one might need to monitor the blood sugar levels more closely, if taking D-Mannose. As there is no strong evidence of D-Mannose being effective for urinary tract infections, those with an active infection should not delay talking to the doctor about their symptoms. Delaying the treatment may make it spread to the kidney and blood.

Dosage of D-Mannose

Due to a lack of proper research, determining the dosage of D-Mannose is difficult. Also, it is difficult to determine the form it would be most effective.

The dosage needed to treat an active infection would vary from the dosage needed to prevent the infection.

A study was done in which the participants who have initially received antibiotic treatment, drank 2 grams of D-Mannose powder dissolved in water for 6 months and this quantity seemed to be effective and safe.(6) However, more research needs to be done to find a proper and effective dosage.

D-Mannose is a potential treatment for urinary tract infection, but the research indicates that it is still very new. More research can help in getting accurate information about its positive and negative effects and dosage. Until then it is good to speak with the doctor for starting it either in the form of food products or supplements.

Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:May 5, 2022

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