Interstitial cystitis: Introduction
Interstitial cystitis is one type of a variety of types of cystitis. Cystitis is an inflammation of the bladder and possibly the urethra, most often caused by a bacterial infection. Interstitial cystitis is a less common form of cystitis and is not caused by an infection. There is no known cause of interstitial cystitis, but it is marked by chronic, long-term inflammation of the bladder wall.
Symptoms of interstitial cystitis include feeling the need to urine in a hurry (urgency) and producing only small amounts of urine and urinary frequency. Pelvic pain may also occur. Symptoms may vary between individuals in intensity. Interstitial cystitis can also impact the quality of life and result in other complications. To learn about additional complications and symptoms, refer to symptoms of interstitial cystitis.
Interstitial cystitis occurs far more frequently in women than in men. Interstitial cystitis often appears between the ages of 30 and 40. It is believed that interstitial cystitis may be associated with other chronic pain syndromes, such as irritable bowel syndrome and fibromyalgia.
Making a diagnosis of interstitial cystitis begins with taking a thorough personal and family medical history, including symptoms, and completing a physical examination, including a pelvic examination for women. During the pelvic examination, the health care practitioner will assess the reproductive organs and take a swab sample of the woman's cervix and have it tested for the presence of sexually transmitted diseases. Men are also tested for sexually transmitted diseases, which can produce symptoms similar to those of interstitial cystitis.
Diagnosis also includes performing a urinalysis test, which checks for the presence of pus, white blood cells, and bacteria in the urine. The presence of these elements point to a diagnosis of bacterial cystitis or urinary tract infection instead of interstitial cystitis.
A potassium sensitivity test may also be performed. This test involves measuring the patient's reaction to the installation of a potassium chloride solution into the bladder. Feeling pain or urgency during the test can help to diagnosis interstitial cystitis.
Other tests are done to rule-out other underlying causes of symptoms, such as bladder cancer. These tests may include cystoscopy, which involves examining the bladder lining with a special instrument that is inserted through the urethra. A bladder biopsy may also be performed. A bladder biopsy takes a sample of cells from the bladder, which is checked for the presence of cancer cells.
A diagnosis of interstitial cystitis can easily be missed or delayed because symptoms are so similar to symptoms of more common conditions, such as urinary tract infection. For more information about misdiagnosis and diseases and conditions that can mimic interstitial cystitis, refer to misdiagnosis of interstitial cystitis.
Interstitial cystitis is not curable and there are no treatments that have proven consistently effective in all people with the disease. An individualized combination of medications, dietary and lifestyle changes, therapeutic treatments, and/or surgery may help to minimize symptoms. For more information on treatment, refer to treatment of interstitial cystitis. ...more »
Interstitial cystitis is an odd disease that is difficult to diagnose.
It causes pain and irritation to the bladder and pelvic area,
and thereby causes various urination symptoms.
Its cause is unclear, but may be autoimmune,
or perhaps only some cases are autoimmune.
Diagnosis of IC is often by ruling out all other possible
causes of bladder symptoms.
Confirmation of a diagnosis is difficult, and the most compelling
evidence for diagnosis is often from surgery and biopsy,
rather than any specific urine or blood tests. ...more »
Interstitial cystitis: Symptoms
The symptoms of interstitial cystitis result from the inflammation of the bladder wall. Symptoms can include feeling the need to urine in a hurry (urgency) and frequent urination (frequency) that produces only a small amount of urine each time. Women may also experience pain during sexual intercourse, and there may be pelvic pain in both men and women. Painful ejaculation may occur in men ...more symptoms »
Interstitial cystitis: Treatments
There is no cure for interstitial cystitis, and no treatments have proven consistently effective for all people with the disease. A good treatment plan involves a multifaceted approach that focuses on the specific treatments that give the individual the most effective relief of symptoms. This may require a combination of medications, dietary and lifestyle changes, therapeutic ...more treatments »
Interstitial cystitis: Misdiagnosis
Symptoms of interstitial cystitis can be nearly identical to symptoms of other urinary tract conditions, especially urinary tract infection, and it is frequently misdiagnosed as such. Because of this, it is not unusual for a proper diagnosis of interstitial cystitis to be delayed for long periods of time.
Symptoms of interstitial cystitis are also similar to symptoms of ...more misdiagnosis »
Symptoms of Interstitial cystitis
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symptoms of Interstitial cystitis
Treatments for Interstitial cystitis
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treatments for Interstitial cystitis
Home Diagnostic Testing
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Interstitial cystitis: Related Patient Stories
Types of Interstitial cystitis
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Interstitial cystitis: Complications
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Causes of Interstitial cystitis
- Bladder inflammation from radiation therapy
- Unknown etiology
- Unknown aetiology
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Interstitial cystitis: Rare Types
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Evidence Based Medicine Research for Interstitial cystitis
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Clinical Trials for Interstitial cystitis
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Clinical Trials for Interstitial cystitis
Statistics for Interstitial cystitis
Interstitial cystitis: Broader Related Topics
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Article Excerpts about Interstitial cystitis
Interstitial Cystitis: NIDDK (Excerpt)
Interstitial cystitis (IC), one of the chronic pelvic pain
disorders, is a condition resulting in recurring discomfort or pain in the
bladder and the surrounding pelvic region.
(Source: excerpt from Interstitial Cystitis: NIDDK)
Your Urinary System and How It Works: NIDDK (Excerpt)
Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a chronic bladder disorder also
known as painful bladder syndrome and frequency-urgency-dysuria syndrome.
In this disorder, the bladder wall can become inflamed and irritated. The
inflammation can lead to scarring and stiffening of the bladder, decreased
bladder capacity, pinpoint bleeding, and, in rare cases, ulcers in the
bladder lining. The cause of IC is unknown at this time.
(Source: excerpt from Your Urinary System and How It Works: NIDDK)
Interstitial Cystitis (Bladder disorder): NWHIC (Excerpt)
Interstitial cystitis, also known as painful bladder syndrome and
frequency-urgency-dysuria syndrome, is a complex, chronic disorder that
has baffled doctors for as long as it has been recognized." "People with
interstitial cystitis (IC) have an inflamed, or irritated, bladder wall.
This inflammation can lead to scarring and stiffening of the bladder,
decreased bladder capacity, glomerulations (pinpoint bleeding) and, in
rare cases, ulcers in the bladder lining." (Source: excerpt from Interstitial Cystitis (Bladder disorder): NWHIC)
Definitions of Interstitial cystitis:
Ophanet, a consortium of European partners,
currently defines a condition rare when it affects 1 person per 2,000.
They list Interstitial cystitis as a "rare disease".
Source - Orphanet
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