We are delighted to announce that the Spring 2020 issue of the IC Optimist has now been released. ICN Members can download their electronic copies from their member page in the ICN Shop now! (You must log in to view your member page. If you’ve forgotten your password, simply click on the password reset link or give us a call at: 800-928-7496). Printed copies should be mailed over the weekend. We appreciate your patience.

In this issue:

(1) Editorial: We Will Get This Together

In this extraordinary time, Jill Osborne shares the impact that COVID-19 has had and how to focus and strengthen your health and well-being. We send our love to everyone affected by this pandemic. 

(2) Feature Story: First Lawsuits Filed Over Elmiron Disease

We feature an extensive interview with the attorney on record, Stacy Hauer of Johnson & Becker, who filed each of the cases in US District Court on behalf of IC patients who sustained eye damage while using Elmiron. 

(3) Related Conditions: Pelvic Congestion Syndrome –

Do you struggle with bladder pressure as the day progresses over time? Does it feel like you are carrying a bowling ball in your pelvis? You might have Pelvic Congestion Syndrome. Its symptoms can mimic those of IC. PCS is curable with very simple treatment. 

(4) How Has COVID Affected Urology Clinics?

Urologists are slowly resuming various tests and procedures that were cancelled with COVID-19. Of course, patients with life threatening conditions will get first priority but we encourage you to raise your hand and ask for an appointment, especially if you are in a flare, need bladder instillations and/or physical therapy. 

(5) Platelet Rich Plasma: A Promising New Therapy? 

Stacey Shannon shares the latest research on Platelet Rich Plasma. It’s been used by professional athletes for years to help their injuries heal faster and it’s may also help to heal an injured bladder.

(6) Feature Story: Do You Need A Second Opinion?

Did you know that IC patients often see six or more clinicians before receiving a correct diagnosis? If you aren’t sure if you have Hunner’s lesions, pelvic floor dysfunction or pudendal neuralgia, it might be time to get a second opinion. Stacey Shannon walks us through the many reasons why this is often necessary. 

(7) The Latest IC Research

Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy is one of the newest therapies under study for IC. It’s been used for a variety of musculoskeletal conditions and researchers are now studying it with IC. We also review the latest urinary biome studies. Another two studies did NOT find significant bacteria triggering IC but fungal infections have been found.

(8) Self Help Tip: Pelvic Floor Relaxation Series

We share a series of eight exercises that you can do to relax your pelvic floor muscles. 

(9) Consumer Alert: What Happened to Raisins?

Each spring we look for the Environmental Working Groups lists of clean vs. contaminated foods. This year, a shocking new discovery was made. More than 90% of raisins, both conventional and organic, were found to be heavily contaminated with pesticides. This is no longer a safe snack for our family.

(10) Feature Story: Do You Flare With Probiotics?

Gaye Sandler answers one of the most puzzling questions we’ve seen in the past few years. Why do some patients flare when using probiotics? It may be Histamine Overload from using too many probiotics and probiotic foods. 

(11) IC Diet Project: Boost Your Immune System With Fresh Fruits and Veggies

Vitamin C is a critical nutrient for our immune system health but when traditional sources are high in acid, IC patients often avoid this essential nutrient. We share the many other bladder friendly fruits and veggies that are high in vitamin C but won’t irritate your bladder. 

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