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Bladder pain syndrome/interstitial cystitis (BPS/IC)

BPS/IC is a chronic condition that causes inflammation of the bladder. It’s distressing due to persistent or recurrent symptoms of pain, pressure or discomfort – usually accompanied by a frequent and urgent need to urinate day and night.1,44

Though symptoms may resemble a urinary tract infection (UTI), no infection can be found in the urine and further tests reveal no identifiable disorder that could account for the symptoms.1,44

What’s the prevalence of BPS/IC?

Due to misdiagnosis of BPS/IC, it’s often hard to estimate the number of people affected by the condition. It can be found globally across all races; however figures vary from study to study depending on the criteria used for diagnosis. It’s more common in women than men and data have shown the risk of BPS/IC increases with age.1,44

  • Chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS)

    Chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) is clinically very similar to BPS/IC and the two conditions have many overlapping symptoms, so there may be more men who have BPS/IC due to misdiagnoses. A diagnosis of BPS/IC should be considered in men who have pain perceived to be related to the bladder. CP/CPPS and BPS/IC can also occur together.1,32


  • 1.Meijlink JM. Interstitial Cystitis/Bladder Pain Syndrome. Int Painful Bl Found. 2014.
  • 32.Lipsky BA. Prostatitis and Urinary Tract Infection in Men: What’s new; What’s True? Am J Med. 1999;106:327-334.
  • 44.Fiander N. Painful bladder syndrome and interstitial cystitis: treatment options. Br J Nurs. 2013;22(9):27-33.