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Interstitial Cystitis

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Interstitial Cystitis
Interstitial cystitis (IC) or painful bladder syndrome (PBS) is a chronic disorder of the bladder characterized by urgency, frequency, pain after intercourse and chronic pain arising from the bladder. This syndrome is also known and painful bladder syndrome (PBS).  The pain can be mild to severe, can fluctuate widely and even periodically go into remission.  The cause of painful bladder syndrome may vary; it can originate from a defect in the bladder lining, a defect in the function of the bladder, a defect in the communication between the bladder and the brain, or a defect in the function of the muscular structures that support the bladder.  Many times, the exact cause is not known but dietary changes, medications and other therapies can provide relief from the symptoms.

IC/PBS is more common in women than it is in men, and it is often diagnosed between ages 30-40.  It may be associated with other chronic problems such as irritable bowel syndrome and fibromyalgia.  

In the evaluation of this pain syndrome, your provider may perform an examination and some additional testing.  First the provider may recommend a cystoscopy which allows the physician to look inside the bladder.  Sometimes they can perform a potassium sensitivity test where different solutions are instilled in the bladder via a small catheter to test the lining of the bladder.  At other times your provider may recommend a urodynamics procedure where catheters are placed in the bladder and the vagina.  During this procedure, your provider can assess bladder function with filling, bladder pressures, pelvic floor pressures and bladder emptying.

If you think you have interstitial cystitis (IC) or painful bladder syndrome (PBS), contact our practice at 407.303.2780 to schedule an appointment.