Interstitial Cystitis

Interstitial Cystitis (IC) is a condition that causes pain or discomfort in the bladder and the surrounding pelvic region. The symptoms are different for each person and can change on a case to case basis. Pain may worsen as the bladder fills or is emptied. The pain typically can be worse for women, during menstruation, but can also affect women who have had hysterectomies.

Due to the varying nature of symptoms and severity, most researchers in the field of study, believe that interstitial cystitis is several diseases. Scientists have recently started using the term bladder pain syndrome (BPS) or painful bladder syndrome (PBS) to describe painful urinary symptoms that do not meet all of the definitions of interstitial cystitis.

Symptoms
  • Urgent need to urinate
  • Frequent need to urinate
  • Mild discomfort, pressure, tenderness, or intense pain in the bladder and pelvic area

Some symptoms of interstitial cystitis appear to be those of a bacterial infection, but tests show no organisms in the urine of people that have interstitial cystitis or painful bladder syndrome. Patients that suffer from interstitial cystitis do not respond to antibiotic therapy.

Some people with severe cases may urinate up to 60 times per day, including nocturia, which is frequent nighttime urination.

Diagnosis
  • Urinalysis and Urine Culture
  • Cystoscopy under Anesthesia with Bladder Distention Biopsy
  • Biopsy
Treatment

While there is no cure for interstitial cystitis, there are many treatment options designed to help relieve symptoms associated with IC

Non Surgical
  • Dietary Changes
  • Smoking Cessation
  • Bladder Instillation
  • Oral Medications
  • Exercise
  • Bladder Training
  • Physcial Therapy
Surgical
  • Cystoscopy with hydrodistention, +/- biopsy
  • Sacral Neuromodulation
  • More aggressive surgery may be an option as a last resort
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