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A Simple Office Test to Detect Interstitial Cystitis/Painful Bladder Syndrome (IC/PBS) is Now Available at Women’s Excellence in Bladder Control

Women’s Excellence in Bladder Control offers a quick office test to determine the diagnosis of Interstitial Cystitis/Painful Bladder Syndrome (IC/PBS). Interstitial Cystitis/Painful Bladder Syndrome is a "rule-out diagnosis" which is often concluded after other urinary disorders have been ruled out. Signs and symptoms of IC/PBS include urinary frequency, urinary urgency, bladder/pelvic/back pain, blood in the urine, and waking at night to void often. These symptoms along with a positive Potassium Sensitivity Test (PST) help to make the diagnosis of IC/PBS.

According to Debbie Henry, NP-C, a nurse practitioner at Women’s Excellence in Bladder Control, the test takes about 5 minutes and the results are known immediately. “At Women’s Excellence in Bladder Control, we believe that the sooner we can diagnose IC/PBS, the sooner we can treat the condition. Treatment can take months to take effect, so we don’t want to lose a day. At Women’s Excellence in Bladder Control, we can perform the test and start the treatment on the same day.”

An insufficient bladder lining is the leading theory of the cause of IC/PBS and the PST tests for this insufficiency. The test is simple and performed at the office. First, a small catheter is placed into the bladder and the bladder is instilled first with plain sterile water and drained to see if there is any reaction such as an increase in pain or urgency. Then the bladder is instilled with a potassium solution in order to mimic urine in the bladder. If the patient has a reaction to the test such as an increase in pain or the sudden urge to void, the test is positive and treatment for IC/PBS is recommended and can start immediately. If there is no difference between the 2 solutions, the test is considered negative.

Patients who are positive receive a pain killing bladder instillation immediately after the test and can start oral therapy with Elmiron to help restore the bladder lining. “We are very successful in treating IC/PBS with conservative methods such as bladder instillations, oral medications, and diet,” states Henry. “We are even prepared to offer and encourage pelvic floor physical therapy and natural remedies as adjuncts to conservative therapy.”

Women’s Excellence is the most comprehensive obstetric and gynecologic office in Michigan. They also specialize in menopause, weight control, bladder control, endometriosis, robotic surgery, pelvic floor physical therapy, and midwifery services. The knowledgeable, well-trained, compassionate physicians and healthcare providers of Women’s Excellence are taking new patients and are conveniently located in four locations throughout southeastern Michigan, Birmingham, Lake Orion, Clarkston and Metamora. For more information, visit

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