Pam, yes the whole process of diagnosis in the west is rediculous. The state of diagnosis and treatment is abysmal. I can’t believe I subjected myself to cystoscopy. I never ended up taking any western medication I just went straight to my holistic doctor. IC does not need cystoscopy for diagnosis. I diagnosed myself after 6 weeks of UTI-like symptoms, in the absense of a positive test for bacteria in my urine. So I knew it was not a UTI, but inflammation. Since that time, things calmed down significantly.
IC is a disease of the small intestine, not really the bladder per say. The bladder just takes the brunt of the inflammation and makes life so much harder. In my doctor’s dissertation on IC, she notes that MANY of her patients had significant life events preventing proper maternal bonding. This description fits me exactly and was haunting and fascinating to read about! So we may have been born with a weak bladder/kidney meridian or other predisposing organ system weaknesses as described in Classical Chinese Medicine, but then for many of us, early life events sent us up for undo childhood stress, leading to IBS with underlying impaired intestinal motility (likely from chronic, low grade stress). This sets the stage for disbyosis. Add to this exposure to antibitotics and Norm’s observation of excessive carbs in the SAD diet which feeds the SIBO (chemical birth control use and NSAIDS later on, etc..sinus medications, steriods, pregnancy, allergy medicaitons, vegetarian diet, mis-use of “natural” supplements, the list goes on!) and the problems start to accumulate in the GI.