Font Size
A
A
A

Interstitial Cystitis (cont.)

Interstitial Cystitis Symptoms

The symptoms of IC are similar to those of a urinary tract infection. They vary from person to person. Most people have some of the following symptoms:

  • Frequency: People with IC need to urinate more often than normal. A person with good health urinates a maximum of seven times a day and does not have to get up at night to urinate. A person with IC urinates frequently, both during the day and night. In early or very mild cases, frequency is sometimes the only symptom.
  • Urgency: As frequency becomes more severe, it leads to urgency. Urgency may also be accompanied by pain, pressure, or spasms. Some people with IC feel a constant urge to urinate that never goes away, even right after urinating.
  • Pain: People with IC may have bladder pain that gets worse as the bladder fills. Some people feel the pain in other areas besides the bladder. The pain may be felt in the lower abdomen, lower back, urethra, or the pelvic or perineal area. Men may feel pain in the scrotum, testicles, or penis. Women may experience pain in the vulva or vagina. The pain may be continuous or intermittent.
  • Sexual difficulties: Women may have pain during intercourse, and men may have painful orgasm.
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Depression
  • Urinary incontinence (leakage)

Symptoms of some people with IC become worse after consumption of certain foods or drinks. They include tomatoes, spices, alcohol, chocolate, caffeinated and citrus beverages, and high-acid foods. Many people also find that symptoms become worse if they have stress (either physical or mental stress). In women, symptoms may vary with the menstrual cycle; symptoms often get worse during periods.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/13/2014
Medical Author:
Coauthor:

Must Read Articles Related to Interstitial Cystitis

Frequent Urination
Frequent Urination Having to urinate more than eight times a day or waking up to go to the bathroom more than once a night is considered frequent urination. Symptoms include urgen...learn more >>

Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Interstitial Cystitis:

Interstitial Cystitis - Diet

What changes to your diet have helped manage your interstitial cystitis?

Interstitial Cystitis - Treatment

What was the treatment for your interstitial cystitis?

Interstitial Cystitis - Describe Your Experience

Please describe your experience with interstitial cystitis.

Interstitial Cystitis - Symptoms

What were the symptoms of your interstitial cystitis?




Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Interstitial Cystitis »

Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a clinical syndrome characterized by daytime and nighttime urinary frequency, urgency, and pelvic pain of unknown etiology.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


Medical Dictionary