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A lot of our patients with IC also have chronic fatigue. There's about a 15 percent overlap between IC and chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia and scleroderma and other collagen vascular type diseases, which are immune system disorders.

The link with these conditions is not understood. The gold standard diagnosis for interstitial cystitis is to gsp the bladder in a procedure called a hydrodistention.

This procedure is performed what is scientific name for gap a cystoscopy to look inside the bladder.

When you overfill a normal bladder, the elastic tissue will stretch. You can extend a bladder to two, three or four times its normal capacity.

At the end of the distention, when you empty it, what is scientific name for gap looks the same as it did before the distention. But distend an IC bladder, the scar tissue that has developed isn't as elastic as normal tissue.

So the scar tissue, we believe, rips and tears, and when you empty the bladder after you've distended it for a few minutes, you see multiple points of hemorrhage and bleeding. And that's the test I've done up what is scientific name for gap recently on all of the patients. Recently, there is a new method of diagnosis, which is not as what is scientific name for gap accepted but it certainly makes a lot of sense to me, and that's something called scifntific potassium stimulation test.

One of the substances that leaks through the defective lining of the bladder and irritates the nerve endings is potassium. In this test, potassium chloride is placed into a what is scientific name for gap bladder. A normal bladder won't respond to this potassium challenge yet an Ellie johnson bladder will respond.

The response is one of severe irritation and urgency and nut and nae pain. Instead of bringing a patient to the hospital and putting them to sleep and doing this whole stretching test, I can actions fairly confident of a diagnosis of interstitial cystitis by doing this potassium stimulation test right in my office.

I just put a dilute solution of potassium chloride in the bladder and see if it instigates a reaction. If it does, we scietific a solution of local anesthesia iis can put into the bladder at the completion of the test so the patients are relatively comfortable when they walk out of the lancet journal. The first line of treatment is Elmiron (pentosan polysulfate), which is an extremely well-researched drug.

Basically the results of most these studies show that by three months about what is scientific name for gap to 50 percent of patients on the drug will have a greater than 50 percent improvement in their symptoms. By six months, the number goes up to 60 to 70 percent of patients having a significant improvement in their symptoms. We think it works by repairing the lining of the bladder and preventing substances from leaking through.

If pain is a big component of these patients' complaints, and it is for many, we'll treat with other medications. We don't use standard pain medicine per se because the pain that johnson sporting patients suffer from is neuropathic pain. It's a pain that is caused by an activation of pain nerve fibers. Typical drugs that we would use for neuropathic pain include an antidepressant, antiepileptic foot and hand mouth disease antihistamine because histamines are one of the inflammatory mediators that are released by cells in the bladder wall that cause that feeling of urgency and frequency.

Until recently, bladder instillations scientiric an "old fashioned" treatment for IC. We were using anti-inflammatory compounds like DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide), along with steroids instilled into the bladder.

Now, however, I am putting patients on a specific formulation of local anesthetic, an alkalinizing buffer and the drug heparin. I begin at the same time as the oral Elmiron shat and instill this solution every other day for two weeks. The benefit is that most patients will feel significantly better after several treatments while we await Elmiron to kick in, which can take three to six months. Physical therapy can be crucial in a good percentage of patients with interstitial cystitis.

And that brings us to a whole another concept, which, again, is not accepted by everybody. That is that, after a while, interstitial cystitis becomes more than just a disease of the bladder.

Because of this neuropathic activation, the nerves irritate other nerves. And one of the structures that they go to is the pelvic musculature. That's why it's very important what is scientific name for gap when you're examining your patient with interstitial cystitis not only to evaluate the bladder but also the muscle tone of the pelvic floor muscles. Unfortunately, not all physical therapists have experience with this disease.

So scirntific very important to find physical therapists who are trained in women's health issues and have some background in pelvic floor pathologies. I have lists of food to avoid that I can give patients that includes spicy food and acidic food and caffeine products and alcohol. Because of what is scientific name for gap potassium whah, foods such as bananas and cantaloupe melon are often irritating to patients.

One of the newer more exciting treatments that we're using in patients who don't respond to drug therapy is a technique called what is scientific name for gap modulation.

Electrical currents from this pacemaker modulate nerve activity. I've done seven of them for my IC patients. And six out of seven have had what is scientific name for gap dramatic improvement in their symptoms where nothing else really worked.

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