Interstitial Cystitis - chronic inflammation of the bladder wall. Its cause is usually unknown and the illness itself
is usually only diagnosed by ruling out other conditions. It tends to occur around age 30 to 40, women being 10 times more susceptible
Symptoms of Interstitial Cystitis
- Pelvic pain
- Urinary discomfort
- Increased urinary frequency urgency
Interstitial Cystitis Treatment: First, Diet Modification
There is no cure or standard treatments for Interstitial Cystitis. Most treatment of diet change and medication is based on
trial and error until the patient finds relief.
Some patients find that eliminating some of the following foods and beverages known to cause irritation may help control symptoms.
- Aged cheeses
- Artificial sweeteners
- Citrus juices: orange, cranberry, grape, etc.
- Coffee and Tea (green tea is better)
- Fava and lima beans
- Meats that are cured, processed, smoked, canned, aged, or that contain nitrites
- Most fruits except blueberries, honeydew melon, and pears
- Nuts except almonds, cashews, and pine nuts
- Rye bread
- Seasonings with MSG
- Sour cream
- Sourdough bread
Interstitial Cystitis Treatment: Second, Medications
A medication called Elmiron is the only medication taken by mouth that is specifically approved for treating IC.
It works by coating the bladder like Pepto-Bismol coats the stomach.
Other medicines may include:
- Opioid painkillers - for severe pain
- Tricyclic antidepressants - to relieve pain and urinary frequency
- Vistaril - causes sedation and helps reduce urinary frequency
Interstitial Cystitis: Stronger Treatements
- Bladder hydrodistention (filling bladder with fluid)
- Bladder training (relaxation techniques to train the bladder and the brain)
- Instilled medications - medicines are placed directly into the bladder
- Physical therapy and biofeedback (relieves pelvic floor muscle spasms)
- Surgeries ranging from cystoscopic manipulation to bladder removal (cystectomy)
Interstitial Cystitis: Tests
- Urine cytology
- Urine culture
- Cystoscopy (endoscopy of bladder)
- Video urodynamics (shows level of urine before you feel the need to urinate)
- Bladder biopsy