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Interstitial Cystitis Symptoms

              “Do you visit the bathroom more frequently?” If your answer is yes, you may be suffering from Interstitial Cystitis. The symptoms of IC may begin for no apparent reason, sometimes following surgery, particularly in women after childbirth or following a severe bacterial infection of the bladder.

               In the very early stages of the disease or in a mild form, the symptoms may only occur in attacks known as ‘flares’. This may lead to the assumption that it may be an infection. But hold on, spontaneous flares and remission are a characteristic feature of IC in many patients suffering from this disease.

               IC can be characterized by DPT (not diphtheria, pertusis, tetanus vaccine), discomfort, pain and tenderness in the bladder and surrounding pelvic area. Other symptoms which help in retrospective diagnosis of IC include,

  • Urgency to urinate
  • Frequent urination
  • Scarred or Stiff bladder
  • Glomerulations
  • Ulcers

The symptoms in women exacerbate just before or during menstruation, during ovulation or if they are taking contraceptive pills. It should be emphasized, however, that many patients never progress further than a relatively mild form of IC.

The symptoms of IC and OAB( overactive bladder syndrome) are analogous, but the major distinction between them will be discussed in our next issue.

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  10. National Kidney and Urologic diseases Information Clearinghouse(NKUDIC). Interstitial cystitis/ painful bladder syndrome. www kidney niddk nih gov. Accessed March 9, 2009.