Hi, You have the typical history of the confusion between IC and a UTI. What is the diagnosis?. IC and UTIs often have the same symptoms and can't be distinguished without a urine culture. What I do in my clinic is to give patients a steril urine cup and the paperwork to submit a urine culture "on demand" when the patient has symptoms, so I always have a culture before treatment. The patient calls my office and informs my staff that she has submitted the culture and we call in an antibiotic. If a patient has clear cut UTI symptoms with a negative culture then I suspect IC. You need a pelvic exam to rule out other causes of burning, and possibly a look into the bladder. If the nitrite pad is positive on the urine dip test, then you probably have a UTI, however if the nitrite pad is negative, that does not rule out a UTI. IC is a chronic disease, and most experts feel you have to have symptoms for at least 3 month with negative urine cultures before the diagnosis can be made. You Urologist was right that a bad UTI can have residual symptoms of inflammation of the bladder wall for weeks after treatment. Start with the cultures during symptoms to clear up the issue of UTI vrs IC. If there is a suspicion of a stone in the ureter, a IVP or CT is the best test Good Luck.
Dear Br. Burks
Thanks for the information. I have had the ct scan (no dye), transvaginal ultrasound and a cysto retrograde both showed nothing unusual. The major issue is burning in my urethra and pain in my lower front were my overies are. It feels like someon is leaning on my bladder.
The urologist does not think it is IC because he said that burning is not a symptoms and the symptoms which started with frequency for 2 days and then the burning and pain started. It has been going on for 30 days. Would a cysto retrograde show IC? He still believed it is the residual effects of a UTI. Do you have any ideas. In your opinion what should the next steps be?
Thanks so much
Dear Dr. Burks
I forgot to mention that the urologist also believes that it is not IC due to the fact that it came on so suddenly which he believes is not a sign of IC. He prescribed phenzo for the week. If I take it 2 times a day (200 mg) it provides much relief. Do you have any insights. Your comments would be much appreiated