Interstitial Cystitis

Interstitial Cystitis or Painful Bladder Syndrome affects an estimated 3.3 million women in the United States¹

9031983_sIf you suffer from feelings of pressure, pain or urinary urgency or frequency, you may have interstitial cystitis or painful bladder syndrome. Dr. J. Kyle Mathews can help diagnose and treat this problematic issue, helping you deal with the life-altering symptoms of IC, interstitial cystitis.

What Is Interstitial Cystitis or Painful Bladder Syndrome?

Interstitial cystitis is a chronic inflammation of the bladder, characterized by bladder pain, pressure and discomfort, as well as pelvic pain. IC can cause multiple symptoms, ranging from mild to severe.

What Are the Symptoms of Interstitial Cystitis?

Every woman who has interstitial cystitis will have a different experience—different symptoms and different levels of pain. Here are some common symptoms:

  • A frequent need to urinate
  • Feeling an urgent need to urinate, even when little urine is present in the bladder
  • Mild to severe bladder pain
  • Mild to severe pain in the pelvic region
  • Pain that increases during menstruation
  • Pain during or after sexual intercourse

How Is Interstitial Cystitis Diagnosed?

Interstitial cystitis is currently being studied, and doctors are looking for the most effective way to both diagnose and treat this condition. The first step is to make an appointment with an experienced urogynecologist like Dr. Mathews. He will take your complete medical history, perform an exam and conduct urine tests. These steps help Dr. Mathews discover the causes of IC, and rule out other conditions that may share some of your current symptoms.

While there is no one way to diagnose interstitial cystitis, here are some of the tests that Dr. Mathews may employ to diagnose your symptoms:

Urinalysis: Your urine sample is analyzed to rule out an infection.

*Potassium Sensitivity Test: Two different solutions (one is water, the other–potassium chloride) are placed in your bladder one at a time, and the patient is asked to rate pain on a scale of 0 to 5. If your bladder is normal, you will not notice a difference between the two solutions; if you feel more pain or urgency with the potassium chloride solution, you may have IC.

*This procedure is no longer recommended by Dr, Mathews

Cystoscopy:  During this procedure, Dr. Mathews inserts the cystoscopy (a small, thin camera) through your urethra to look inside your bladder. Your bladder will need to be distended (or stretched) by filling it with liquid or gas so the doctor can see everything clearly. During cystoscopy, you will receive a local anesthesia.

Biopsy: We may collect a tissue sample during a cystoscopy to determine if your symptoms may be caused by bladder cancer.

How Is Interstitial Cystitis Treated?

There is no cure for IC (or painful bladder syndrome) at this time, but Dr. Mathews uses different treatments alone or in combination to help relieve the symptoms of IC. Some of the treatments for interstitial cystitis that may help you include:

  • Oral medications
  • Electrical nerve stimulation
  • Bladder distention
  • Bladder instillation
  • Surgery

To learn more about interstitial cystitis, contact Dr. Mathewsat Plano Urogynecology Associates. You will receive compassionate care backed by more than 20 years of experience serving women in the Dallas and Frisco communities.

1Berry SH, Elliott MN, Suttorp M, et al. Prevalence of symptoms of bladder pain syndrome/interstitial cystitis among adult females in the United States. Journal of Urology. 2011;186:540–544.