Cystitis is a painful, upsetting condition that can recur frequently and steal enjoyment from our lives. Enjoying coffee with girlfriends, focusing on a work project, shining at a major work meeting, or enjoying a bicycle ride or other awesome hobby all become all but impossible. The pain of urinating can be so painful that it leaves us dreading to use the bathroom. Sex can become literally impossible. Symptoms can be constant or intermittent, they can disappear then flare up before our period, yet physicians might send us away telling us there is nothing wrong, or misdiagnose the condition, leading to longer-term complications.
Needing the bathroom frequently, feeling the urgent need to pee, or never feeling as if our bladder is empty are also all annoying, debilitating symptoms that can be embarrassing, inconvenient & uncomfortable in equal measure. Sitting at your desk all day becomes almost impossible, even sleeping becomes impacted, & a happy life turns into an infuriating battle to just get through the day. Symptoms can worsen particularly in the week before the menstrual cycle.
In short, cystitis is a painful, annoying condition that can suck the joy from our lives.
So let us help you eradicate it. Once and for all.
How Common is Interstitial Cystitis (IC)?
Cystitis is surprisingly common in women, and it is thought that around 10% of women contract cystitis every year. Women are far more likely to suffer from IC than men, given that their urethra is shorter, which makes it easier for bacteria to enter the bladder. New research has also found that IC in women is far more prevalent than previously thought, with around 3-8 million women (6% of the US female population) thought to have the condition. Despite this prevalence, IC is commonly misdiagnosed as a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection), which leads to frequent worsening of symptoms because the real condition has been neglected.
Worryingly, while symptoms often appear by the age of 30, women often do not receive a formal, correct IC diagnosis until around the age of 40, with misdiagnoses commonly including UTIs, vulvodynia, endometriosis, yeast vaginitis, or chronic pelvic pain. That means that many women sadly suffer years of needless discomfort when they could have been enjoying a pain-free, enjoyable, symptom-free life.
What Causes IC?
It is thought that IC might occur due to a dysfunction of the mucus barrier of the epithelial surface of the bladder, where urine solute leaks into the bladder wall causing depolarization of bladder nerves & muscles. This defect in bladder tissue can allow bacteria and irritants in the urine to penetrate the bladder, and for histamine & other chemicals released by mast cells in the body (a type of inflammatory cell) to enter. Foreign substances of some kind in the urine, dysfunction in the nerves that signal that the bladder is filling, which causing anomalous pain where there should be none, the presence of an erroneous substance in urine that inhibits the growth of cells in the bladder tissue, &/or autoimmune irregularities where the body’s immune system attacks the bladder could also contribute.
These dysfunctions are responsible for the well-known symptoms of IC – the urgency to pee, urinary incontinence, frequent nocturnal waking to urinate, &/or ongoing pain or pressure in the abdomen – but often, by the stage these physical symptoms are manifest, the disease has already progressed significantly.
The risks of suffering IC tend to increase with age, with stress worsening symptoms. Often patients do not present to a physician until they experience physical symptoms, and often antibiotics are wrongly prescribed for a UTI. These later-stage diagnoses – and often incorrect diagnoses – can compound the problem for sufferers significantly.
Often referred to as Bladder Pain Syndrome, this moniker can make the condition even harder to diagnose, as a patient can present with the condition without pain. The key, ultimately, is to catch the disease early, when symptoms are mild and intermittent, which is what we at the Doctors Studio hope to achieve with our screening procedures. If you have any of the following symptoms, you might be experiencing early or later-stage IC:
- Pain during sex or orgasm
- Difficulty urinating
- A constant feeling of the need to urinate
- Blood in your urine (hematuria)
- A feeling that you cannot completely empty your bladder after urinating
- Urinating small amounts frequently
- Burning pain or stinging when you urinate
- Urine that is dark, cloudy, or smells different
- A general feeling of being achy & unwell
- Pain or pressure in the lower abdominal region (tummy area)
It is critical to remember that symptoms can be intermittent, so if you have a flare-up and it goes away, this may mean that you are still suffering from IC and that while asymptomatic, it is still a great time to pursue treatment.
Treatments & Therapies at the Doctors Studio
The great news is that you’ve come to the right place if you want to rid yourself of your IC and related bladder problems for good. Alongside a number of cutting-edge, progressive, next-generation, medically developed therapies & treatments, we are also currently developing a Doctors Studio exclusive online course that will help you navigate this problematic condition.
The Doctors Studio Online Course – Coming Soon!
Taken online, the HOPE Protocol aims to free you of your interstitial cystitis symptoms once and for all. The first step is to work out if you can identify with the following:
- You experience chronic, constant pain or a feeling of pressure in the pelvis that causes you frequent discomfort. Simple acts like sitting down comfortably might become difficult, with office work, ‘plane journeys, commuting, and even sitting down to enjoy dinner sometimes feeling like a near impossibility. You may experience symptoms constantly or intermittently.
- You often need to empty your bladder around every 15-30 minutes, which leaves you fearful of attending what were previously happy, fun, relaxed events – such as a child’s sports game or recital. These symptoms can be intermittent or constant.
- When you get the urge to urinate, you are terrified of not making it to the toilet in time and may have already experienced humiliating accidents that quickly ruin your day.
- Sex has become so painful that you have simply stopped trying, leading to a decline in intimacy between you and your partner.
- Your job has been affected as you often need to visit the bathroom so frequently and it is impacting your work.
- You have changed the way you dress because you are constantly thinking about “what happens if I have an accident?” and as a result, you frequently no longer feel comfortable in your own skin.
- You are afraid to seek help because you have already visited physician after physician but are simply told every time that there is nothing wrong with you.
- You are feeling stressed, anxious, or depressed because of bladder issues.
- Symptoms often flare around your period.
- A feeling that a UTI keeps returning; this might instead be flare-ups of the same underlying IC condition.
If these scenarios sound familiar, then the HOPE Protocol online course might offer a great fit for you. Please contact the Doctors Studio today if you feel that IC is ruining your life, your happiness & your wellness, and we will get you on course with the HOPE Protocol to set you back on the road to optimized wellness and a joyful, symptom-free life once again!
How Can I Manage My Symptoms?
In the meantime, you might want to consider eradicating some triggers that might be irritating your bladder and causing IC to flare. While these recommendations are not a replacement for treatment, they can help to ease symptoms: first, try to rest, drink more fluids such as water and use a warm water bottle on your abdomen to relieve pain or pressure. Try to avoid caffeine, alcohol, tomatoes, spices, chocolate, and other foods that can aggravate your symptoms, and take over-the-counter painkillers if you need to. Then contact the Doctors Studio to finally find a way to put an end to IC symptoms for good.
Ultimately, we want to ensure that we spot & treat your IC symptoms as early as possible. We possess the medical knowledge, testing, treatments, & therapies to not only return you to health but to optimize your health and ensure that IC never returns to blight your life. If you feel that you, or someone you love, would benefit from our HOPE Program and other therapies & treatments, contact us today!
- Sex has become so painful that your relationship is on the rocks. Intimacy has become impossible and deep frustrations are building between you and your partner and you are terrified divorce is on the horizon.
- Your job is on the line because you are unable to go 15 minutes without having to take a trip to the bathroom and your confidence in your ability to do your work is slipping.
- You have changed the way you dress because you are constantly thinking about “what happens if I have an accident?” and you no longer feel comfortable in your own skin.
- You are afraid to seek help because no one believes you and you are tired of visiting physician after physician only to learn that they can’t tell you what’s wrong with you.
If this sounds like the life you’re living, then I have an answer for you.
Don’t Know Where to Start?
The Studio Team is here to serve you.