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Letter of response to the commentary written by Dr Howell
  1. Ruth Jepson
  1. School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, University of Stirling, Stirling, UK
  1. Correspondence to: Dr Ruth Jepson
    School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, University of Stirling, Stirling FK9 4LA, UK; ruth.jepson{at}stir.ac.uk

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Dr Howell has undertaken some excellent work on the mechanisms of action for cranberries and urinary tract infections (UTIs) and she raises some interesting points in her commentary. However I must dispute some of the assertions she makes.

Dr Howell argues that Cochrane reviews have been used to evaluate drug therapies, but they may not be the most effective way to review randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of food products. Cochrane methods are primarily designed to systematically search, identify, quality assess and synthesise RCTs of a range of interventions. In addition to evaluating the effectiveness of drug therapies, Cochrane reviews cover an extensive range of other topics such as health technologies, complementary therapies and dietary interventions including food products, for …

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