Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a chronic condition causing bladder pressure, bladder pain, pelvic pain and sometimes pain with intercourse. The pain ranges from mild discomfort to severe pain. The condition is a part of a spectrum of diseases known as painful bladder syndrome. If you have urinary pain that lasts for more than six weeks and is not caused by other conditions like infection or kidney stones, you may have IC.
The signs and symptoms of interstitial cystitis vary. If you have interstitial cystitis, your symptoms may also vary over time, periodically flaring. Symptom severity is different for everyone, and some people may experience symptom-free periods.
You may experience the following common symptoms:
The exact cause of interstitial cystitis isn’t known, but it’s likely that there are many contributing factors. People with interstitial cystitis may have a defect in the protective lining (epithelium) of the bladder. A leak in the epithelium may allow toxic substances in urine to irritate the bladder wall.
Other possible, but unproven, contributing factors are an autoimmune reaction, heredity, infection or allergy.
Factors associated with a higher risk of interstitial cystitis are:
1) What to know before your visit:
2) Other tests that may be performed during or after your visit are:
Dietary changes, physical therapy, allergy medications, medications instilled into the bladder, and oral medications such as anti-inflammatory drugs, Elmiron and Tricyclic antidepressants.
Sacral nerve stimulator, botox, bladder distention, bladder fulguration and steroid injections.
Schedule an appointment with a MidLantic Urology physician near you today!