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Urology. 2001 Feb;57(2):262-5.

Significance of hematuria in patients with interstitial cystitis: review of radiographic and endoscopic findings.

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  • 1Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.



Hematuria may be found in up to 30% of patients with interstitial cystitis (IC). However, few studies have described its etiology based on the findings of a complete evaluation. We reviewed the clinical significance of hematuria in the setting of IC.


We retrospectively reviewed the records of 148 patients fulfilling the National Institute of Arthritis, Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases inclusion criteria for IC. Patients with gross or microscopic hematuria were identified. Evaluation consisted of urine culture and cytology, cystoscopy, and intravenous urography (or retrograde pyelography plus renal ultrasound). Patients with urinary tract infections were excluded.


Of 148 patients, 60 (41%) were found to have had at least one episode of hematuria during a mean follow-up of 18 months. Of 56 patients who agreed to be evaluated, 8 (14%) had positive urologic findings. Of these, none were highly significant; five were simple renal cysts (8.9%), one was a renal stone (1.8%), one was reflux nephropathy (1.8%), and one was medullary sponge kidney (1.8%). Cystoscopy, cytology, and bladder biopsy did not demonstrate malignancy in any patient. No statistically significant differences were found in age (49.9 versus 46.7 years), sex (90% versus 91% female), bladder capacity (792 versus 808 mL), and the presence of Hunner's ulcers (5% versus 2.4%), glomerulations (60% versus 59.9%), or detrusor mastocytosis (55% versus 47.6%) between patients with hematuria and those without (P >0.05).


The incidence of hematuria in patients with IC may be higher than previously reported. Nevertheless, although many of these patients present with pelvic pain and irritative voiding symptoms, the hematuria evaluation is unlikely to reveal a life-threatening urologic condition.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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