Natural & Alternative Treatments>Conditions>Article

Bladder Infection

Related Terms:

Acute Cystitis

A bladder infection is inflammation caused by bacteria. It can cause pain and problems passing urine. It is treated with antibiotics. Symptoms will pass as you recover. Pain medicine can help manage discomfort. Some will add natural treatments to ease symptoms and prevent repeat infection.

Natural Therapies

Likely Effective

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Herbs and Supplements to Be Used With Caution

Talk to your doctor about all herbs or pills you are taking. Some may get in the way of your treatment or other health problems you may have. Cranberry concerns may include:

  • May cause diarrhea and stomach upset when used in large amounts.
  • Cranberry also has salicylic acid which is a main ingredient in aspirin. It may cause issues if the two are taken together.
  • People with kidney stones should avoid excess cranberry. They have oxalate which can increase the risk of kidney stones.



A1. Jepson RG, Craig JC. A systematic review of the evidence for cranberries and blueberries in UTI prevention. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2007 Jun;51(6):738-745.

A2. Hess MJ, Hess PE, Sullivan MR, et al. Evaluation of cranberry tablets for the prevention of urinary tract infections in spinal cord injured patients with neurogenic bladder. Spinal Cord. 2008 Apr 8.

A3. Jepson R, Craig J. Cranberries for preventing urinary tract infections. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2008;CD001321.

A4. Jepson RG, Williams G, Craig, JC. Cranberries for preventing urinary tract infections. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2012;CD001321.

A5. Wang CH, Fang CC, Chen NC, et al. Cranberry-containing products for prevention of urinary tract infections in susceptible populations: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Arch Intern Med. 2012 ;172(13):988-996.

A6. Jepson R. Cranberries for the prevention of urinary tract infections. Nephrology (Carlton). 2013 May;18(5):388-389.

A7. Jepson, R, Craig J, et al. Cranberry products and prevention of urinary tract infections. JAMA. 2013 Oct 2;310(13):1395-1396.

A8. Luís Â, Domingues F, et al. Can Cranberries Contribute to Reduce the Incidence of Urinary Tract Infections? A Systematic Review with Meta-Analysis and Trial Sequential Analysis of Clinical Trials. J Urol. 2017 Sep;198(3):614-621.

A9. Fu Z, Liska D, et al. Cranberry Reduces the Risk of Urinary Tract Infection Recurrence in Otherwise Healthy Women: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. J Nutr. 2017 Dec;147(12):2282-2288.

Last reviewed May 2019 by EBSCO NAT Review Board