Patient Perceived Outcomes of Treatments Used for Interstitial Cystitis


      Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a challenging disease complex. Patients’ perception of their outcomes after different treatment modalities may be the best measure of therapeutic efficacy. Our study focused on a large group of women with a diagnosis of IC who reported on perceived outcomes after undergoing invasive and pharmaceutical treatments for their disease.


      Seven hundred fifty patients with a diagnosis of IC completed a computerized survey that queried each patient about their demographics, symptoms, concomitant diagnoses, treatments, and their perceived treatment outcomes. The patients were surveyed on therapies used to treat IC and whether they perceived their condition to be improved, not affected or having deteriorated at a mean follow-up of 6 months. Pearson chi-squared tests were used in the statistical analyses.


      Invasive and medical therapies were surveyed. The most commonly performed procedures were hydrodistention (61.9%), intravesical therapy (40.1%), and urethral dilatation (26.5%). Of these procedures, 24.4% to 45.3% of patients were improved by these procedures; whereas 27.0% to 49.8% felt no effect and 25.9% to 30.7% worsened. A comparison of the number of patients who improved with those who deteriorated while on medical therapy was found to be significant for all drugs (P <0.001). The majority of patients reported that medications improved their condition, perceptively.


      Medical therapy is perceived to be superior to invasive therapy in the treatment of IC. Medication should be considered the first line therapy for IC. Several medications showed a large percentage of patients with improvement in symptoms. These medications were calcium glycerophosphate (Prelief, AkPharma Inc, Pleasantville, NJ), phenazopyridine, and pentosan polysulfate sodium.
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