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What, exactly, do bladder spasms feel like?

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  • What, exactly, do bladder spasms feel like?

    Are they stress related?
    Are they intermittent?
    Do they feel like a pinching sensation?
    When are they worse - when sitting, standing or walking?
    What do you recommend doing for them in terms of self help and not prescriptions such as exercises, Kegels, etc?

    Thanks very much.

  • #2
    Lately I've been getting them after I void. They feel like my bladder is going crazy. It feels almost like my bladder is cramping. I don't really know how else to describe it. My pain meds kicked in so I'm not very good with words right now, lol. I find that a heating pad right over the bladder area is what helps me the most.

    I have been diagnoised for 6 1/2 years now. I have taken a long break from the ICN but really miss helping out my fellow IC patients and want to get back into posting.
    1st hydro 4/07 showed no visible signs of IC but tons of mast cells in all my biopsy samples which did prove IC.
    2nd hydro 4/13/09 showed dark purple glomerulations and I had a capacity of 450 cc's. This hydro proved that my IC had progressed.
    I have tried every oral medication as well as rescue instills and DMSO.

    I have been lucky enough to see Dr Hanno, the top IC specialist in PA who has told me due to the fact that I have not responded to any "standard" treatments that I have a severe, end stage case of IC with a horrible quality of life (didn't have to tell me that last part!)

    Proud wifey of Shane, mommy to Griffin, and step-mom to Logan and Gage
    Also proud mom to the best Bullmastiff on earth, Claus


    • #3
      When I have spasms mine feel like menstral cramping and a severe aching. They hurt worse after I've urinated and when I'm walking around, and if I sit on a backless chair. My husband bought a book called "Pain Erasure" by Bonnie Prudden. In her book she talks about trigger point therapy and shows where trigger points are. We found that my trigger pain points are near my tail bone and I have a one on each leg. So we bought a heating vibrator and my husband would use that on the spots in my lower back and legs for 30 min. and then we'd apply ice after that and then Biofreeze. We did this every night for several months and it has literally put an end to my spasms. If I feel a twinge that I think might be a spasm starting we start over for a week.
      Also, I take Freeze dried Aloe Vera (not a prescription) to help rebuild the lining of my bladder and coat it. Roxie

      Double Spinal Cord Stimulator surgery 8/09
      Unsuccessful MiniArc sling surgery 12/07
      Dx'd Hypothyroid
      Dx'd Chronic Axonal Neuropathy & Myopathy
      June 2007
      Dx'd IC May 2006 (after suffering for 25+ yrs!)
      First Cysto 1979
      First Hydro 1981 (Many treatments since then!)
      Collagin"Durasphere" injections for urethra
      Gall bladder surgery Aug. 2004
      Gastric Bypass Dec. 2004
      Dx'd: Barrett's Esphogus July 2004
      Dx'd: Vaginal Atrophy 2005
      Bladder surgery 2000
      Dx'd: IBS 2000
      Hysterectomy (fibroids) 1999
      Laminectomy 1989
      Dx'd: Degerative Disk Disorder 1989

      For IC I use Elmiron, Elavil and Freeze dried Aloe Vera (it works likes Elmiron, but naturally)and Azo as needed. I also take Zegerid, Randitine for Barrett's Esophagus. (which causes me to have constant yeast infections!)I take Cymbalta for Neuopathy/Myopathy pain. I use the Climara patch for menopause symptoms. I'm on a very strict diet because of the IC, IBS and Gastric Bypass. I take Primal Defense Probiotics and whole food Iron.
      I no longer have the awful urethral pain! I've been using MSM gel now for 4 mo. and haven't had a flare up or the urethra's amazing stuff!!:woohoo:


      • #4
        oh bladder spasms (and they've kicked in again, ate a bit of green pepper grrrrrrrr) feel like cramping and period pains!!! i swear for awhile i thought i was getting my period even tho i'd just gotten over it! there seems to be no pattern either--sometimes they'll come AFTER i pee or before...sometimes worse before/after. i dunno what's worse, though...bladder spasms or urethral spasms (which are HORRIFIC).

        hope this helps!
        (Added by ICNMgrJill on 5/19/08. I am sad to share that Verdicries (aka Tracy) lost her life in a tragic accident just a few days ago. We will miss her support, her encouragement, her sense of humor and, of course, the joy that she found as a mother and wife).

        Tracy ~ 29 years old with Toxoplasmosis (from birth), Fibro/CFS (since age 13...ouch), severe IC, IBS-D, severe PFD (surgery made it even worse), vulvodynia, hiatal hernia, GERD, ulcers, severe gastritis, numbness/tingling in extremeties, pelvic nerve damage--mainly urethral, urinary retention, pelvic reconstruction 7.10.07 (fixed rectocele, rectal prolapse, lifted bladder, urethra, uterus, and repaired vaginal walls), Raynaud's, 2 severely herniated discs in neck and one in low back, anemia, PCOS, anxiety/depression/panic attacks (since forever). Still having major bowel problems (inability to empty rectum...any ideas?? ).

        I'd like to be on House, MD as a medical mystery.

        Married to Craig, a saint amongst men...who puts up with me and my eccentricities...

        Connor & Mommy by the tree:

        Connor with happy!

        I take: LIQUID Atarax, Flomax, Soma (yet again), acidophilus, Glucosamine/Chondroitin with MSM & collagen, d-mannose. MAJOR flare from Cystoprotek! Re-trying freeze dried aloe vera w/some decent results!

        Tried and failed: Elavil, Ultram, Prosed DS, Benadryl, Bentyl, Valium, Ativan, Zanaflex, Librax, Sanctura (all caused retention among other things), bladder instills (owwwwww!), Elmiron (allergic-throat tightening). Failed Interstim-no feeling in sacral nerves...

        I'm allergic to penicillan, sulfa, reglan, quinolones, clindamycin, and now LATEX!


        • #5
          I have always described mine as being like slightly misplaced menstrual cramps.

          Stay safe

          Elmiron Eye Disease Information Center -
          Elmiron Eye Disease Fact Sheet (Downloadable) -

          Have you checked the ICN Shop?
          Click on ICN Shop at the top of this page. You'll find Bladder Builder and Bladder Rest, both of which we are finding have excellent results.

          Patient Help:


          Diet list:

          AUA Guidelines:

          I am not a medical authority nor do I offer medical advice. In all cases, I strongly encourage you to discuss your medical treatment with your personal medical care provider. Only they can, and should, give medical recommendations to you.

          Anyone who says something is foolproof hasn't met a determined fool


          • #6
            Mine are more like a throbbing sensation right above my pubic bone.

            I am multi-diseased with : MS, IC, IBS, and PDF

            Diagnosed with IC - May 2006 IC symptoms : burning and frequency

            Diagnosed with MS - March 2004 MS symptoms numbness in arms and legs, muscle weakness, major lack of bladder control and increasing bowel control problems. I wear Depend underwear 24/7.

            Diagnosed with IBS - Sept 23, 2008

            Diagnosed with PFD - Oct 1, 2008

            Divorced Oct. 2009

            IC Meds

            Lortab for pain

            MS Meds:

            Skelaxin ( muscle relaxer)
            Neurototin for pain

            "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life." -John 3:16

            The Serenity Prayer:
            God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.


            • #7
              So the menstrual cramping/"pelvic pain" I've heard so much about (and experienced) is actually bladder spasms??? Very interesting!!!!

              My PFD therapist said that when your bladder feels "hard" when you touch it - its in a spasm. Anyone ever notice this?


              • #8
                bladder spasms

                Hey ladies'
                Before I start writing i want you to know that i can spell, just can't type, so figure it out if you can lol. My spasms are terrible. I am glad yours are like menstrual cramps. I know that sounds bad, but what I mean is mine are very hard lately and They feel like I am actually in labor just before delivery. I told my uro and he said that most did not get as horrible as mine. They would rate as the most a labor contraction gets. I had to get belledona and op. supp for mine and they have really helped, but there goes another pain narcotic. Maybe just a low dose would help yours. Also I was told that cammolile tea helps with spasms. My doc said I need to have my bledder removed and I refuse until I have exhausted all other alternatives, even pain meds. I don't want to tell this as tha gospel but I was told the DMSO instill did more damage to my bladder than they knew at the time I took them. They did give some relief when I was first dxg. and you all know you will do whatever to get relief and being new I thought they were great. I think some of the docs. are pulling back from them now days. If you can get any other kin of instills I wish youu would see about leaving out the DMSO> They told me you do not know it until later stages in ic. I have heard that the trigger point massages help. I haven't found out anything about them. I will try to get the book for myself. Hope this helps. I also have breakinnng into back pain when the spasms start. I went to the er back a while and was groaning like a mad woman and they gave me a shot. Only thing it coat a fortune to go to the er.

                Hope all is well as can be. and I hope this helps. and pray noone ever gets them like mine.



                • #9
                  My pain is very a sharp pain and low in the front (pelvic area) and I would describe mine as someone taking that area and wringing it and twisting it very tightly. My lower back almost always hurts too. I am worse at the end of the day usually. But I try to take pain meds at the 1st sign of pain to offset it getting worse.

                  The happiest people don't neccessarily have the best of everything, they just make the best of everything that comes their way!!

                  IC: Elmiron, Tofranil, Hydroxyzine, Prosed DS, stool softener
                  UC: Asacol