Rev Esp Quimioter 2017, 30(5): 372-378

Misconceptions of Spanish general practitioners’ attitudes toward the management of urinary tract infections and asymptomatic bacteriuria: an internet-based questionnaire study


Introduction. The diagnosis and management of urinary tract infections (UTI) vary widely across countries and practices. The objective of this study was to gain insight into general practitioners’ (GP) perceptions on the current management of UTIs and asymptomatic bacteriuria in Spain.
Methods. Cross-sectional, internet-based questionnaire study answered from July to September 2013. GPs affiliated with the largest Spanish scientific society in primary care (Sociedad Española de Medicina Familiar y Comunitaria) were invited to participate in the study. They were asked about the tests ordered in both uncomplicated and complicated UTIs and about the management in three clinical scenarios, depicting a 50-year woman with: 1. An uncomplicated UTI, 2. A complicated UTI, and 3. An asymptomatic bacteriuria.
Results. The questionnaire was completed by 1,239 GPs (6.7%). Urine cultures were reportedly requested by 26.3% of the GPs in uncomplicated UTIs and by 71.8% of the cases corresponding to the complicated UTIs whereas it was declared that dipsticks were the preferred tests in only uncomplicated UTIs (38.2%). A total of 22% and 13.2% of the GPs stated that they would withhold antibiotic therapy in patients with low-count and high-count asymptomatic bacteriuria, respectively
Conclusions. GPs have important misconceptions as to the indications for ordering urine cultures and in interpreting the definitions of common UTIs and treating UTIs and asymptomatic bacteriuria. The unnecessary use of antibiotics in patients with asymptomatic bacteriuria is considerable in Spain.

Rev Esp Quimioter 2017;  30 (5): 372-378 [Full-text PDF]