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Diagnosis and Testing

The difficult thing about interstitial cystitis is that the symptoms of this condition overlap with those of other bladder disorders and related medical issues.

Therefore, to diagnose IC, it is important to rule out medical problems such as chronic prostatitis in men, endometriosis in women, urinary tract infection, chronic pelvic pain syndrome, sexually transmitted diseases, kidney stones and bladder cancer.

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Diagnosing Interstitial Cystitis (IC)

There is no specific testing or screening method that will give a definitive diagnosis of interstitial cystitis. Because of this, there are a lot of IC cases that go undiagnosed. Once the doctor determines that the symptoms you are experiencing are not due to these related disorders, you will be diagnosed with interstitial cystitis.

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How to Know When You Need to Be Tested for Interstitial Cystitis in Atlanta

When you are experiencing signs of interstitial cystitis including the urgent need to urinate, pelvic pain, frequent urination but only in small volumes as well as pain and discomfort in the bladder, it is highly recommended to have yourself tested immediately. If you’ve experienced these kinds of symptoms, you’ve most likely started researching your condition online using queries like “treatment for bladder pain near me” or “urologist near me.” If this is you, Advanced Urology can help. Call us today to learn more about testing and to make an appointment.

When you consult your doctor and report these interstitial cystitis symptoms, you will have to undergo tests that will rule out the other possible medical conditions. Some of these diagnostic methods include:

  • Urinalysis and urine culture – You will be requested to provide a sample of your urine, which will then be sent to the laboratory for analysis and to check if there is an infection.
  • Postvoid residual urine volume – Through an ultrasound, the doctor will determine the amount of urine that stays in your bladder after you urinate.
  • Cystoscopy – If there is blood in your urine and treatment methods do not work, a thin tube with a camera is inserted into your urethra to see the inside of your bladder.
  • Bladder and urethral biopsy – This diagnostic method involves obtaining a small piece of tissue, which will then be tested.
  • Bladder stretching – In this test, you will be administered with anesthesia so you will be asleep while your bladder is filled up with gas or liquid to stretch it.
  • Prostate fluid culture – Your prostate will be pressed and your doctor will have the fluid analyzed.

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What to Expect When Getting Tested for Interstitial Cystitis in Atlanta, Georgia

When you first consult with your Atlanta urologist, you will be asked about the symptoms that you feel, a description of your urine such as the odor and color and whether or not you are experiencing fever and vomiting.

After a short interview with you, you will be examined by the doctor and a sample of your urine will be analyzed in the laboratory. For women, a pelvic exam may be performed while a digital rectal exam may be done on men.

Furthermore, your primary care doctor may refer you to an Atlanta urologist for the diagnosis of IC. In some cases where a cystoscopy is required, the urologist will use a small tube with a camera to have a look in your bladder and its inner lining. A biopsy may also be performed wherein a sample of tissue may be obtained from your bladder wall, which will then be tested in the lab for diseases and signs of inflammation.