Physicians and clinics that conduct research on IC/BPS, prostatitis and/or pelvic pain are found throughout the USA, Canada and the world. Here in the USA, clinics and researchers funded by the NIDDK have passed rigorous training and reviews to participate in the larger national studies. Thus, their knowledge levels are generally quite good.
The advantage of going to a research center is that they have a depth of experience that many local clinics will not have. They see thousands of patients are year, often the more complex cases. The staff generally attend the most important IC research conferences thus should be up-to-date on the latest IC advances and treatments. If they ask you to participate in a research study, you usually receive your medical care and medications at no charge.
The disadvantage of going to a research center is that they need participants for their studies and will encourage you to participate. It’s vitally important that you put your health first. Some clinical trial participants may receive a “placebo” rather than a real medication for their IC thus setting their own progress back for several weeks or months.
Participating in a clinical trial is a very generous gift to the IC community because are helping to advance the knowledge of IC. We thank you sincerely for your efforts. Yet every study does have risks. Make sure that you carefully review the potential list of risks and side effects before you agree to participate in any study.