Waterworks trouble 'cure' put to the test

July 14, 2000

Medical scientists at Dundee University are putting to the test the popular notion that cran-berry juice can prevent and treat urinary infections.

More than 400 elderly people will take part in the Pounds 100,000 two-year study funded by Scotland's Chief Scientist's Office. It aims to set up a series of rigorous trials to discover whether drinking cranberry juice combats the problem, which affects up to a third of elderly people in hospital.

Marion McMurdo, Dundee's professor of ageing and health who will lead the study, said: "We are comparing the effect of cranberry juice versus a placebo drink that looks, smells and tastes like cranberry juice but doesn't have the magic cranberry ingredients in it."

"What we are looking at is the enormously attractive notion that this is a cheap, readily available treatment, apparently free from side-effects."

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