Last updated on February 2020

Clinical Trial Comparing Two Bladder Instillations for IC/BPS


Brief description of study

Interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS) is a condition that results in long-term bladder and pelvic pain. IC/BPS affects women more often than men. How the disorder develops is not completely known. Bladder instillation is a commonly used treatment in which a mixture of different ingredients are passed into the bladder to help IC/BPS symptoms. There is room to learn more about bladder instillations and which ingredients in them work best. The purpose of this study is to compare the effectiveness of a bladder instillation that contains a steroid (triamcinolone acetonide) to a bladder instillation that does not contain a steroid to treat IC/BPS in women. The study hypothesis is that women with IC/BPS treated with bladder instillations that contain a steroid will have improved outcomes compared to women treated with bladder instillations that do not contain a steroid.

Detailed Study Description

Interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS) is a chronic pain disorder involving the genitourinary tract. IC/BPS disproportionately affects women with over 80% of patients with IC/BPS as female.[1] Like other chronic pain conditions, IC/BPS is physically and emotionally taxing on patients. IC/BPS costs the United States over $100 million annually due to direct healthcare costs and loss of worker productivity.[2] The exact pathophysiology of the disease is unknown, leading to a limitation in our ability to treat the disorder effectively. The current leading etiologic theory is that IC/BPS is a neurologically-derived chronic systemic pain syndrome due to its association with musculoskeletal pelvic pain, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and vulvodynia.[3-6] Although several options exist to treat IC/BPS, therapeutic effects are often transient.[7,8] Previous studies in chronic pain disorders have shown that multimodal treatment is more effective than single-agent treatment,[9,10] so future therapy should aim to augment rather than replace current treatments. Bladder instillation is a commonly used treatment in which a mixture of different agents are instilled into the bladder to improve IC/BPS symptoms. The data on the efficacy of bladder instillations, as well as which ingredients in the mixture are effective, is limited.[11,12] Small studies have shown the potential of steroids in decreasing IC/BPS; the mechanism of action is hypothesized to be due to decrease inflammation in the bladders of these patients.[13,14] The knowledge gap that exists is the necessity of a steroid in the bladder instillation treatment for IC/BPS symptoms especially since this tends to be the most expensive ingredient.

To evaluate the utility of a steroid in the bladder instillation treatment of IC/BPS, we propose a randomized, double blind, controlled trial that will compare the efficacy of bladder instillations with and without triamcinolone acetonide on IC/BPS symptoms in women. We hypothesize that the addition of triamcinolone acetonide in bladder instillation therapy will result in a more robust treatment response than bladder instillations without triamcinolone acetonide. Our rationale is based on 1) the results of small studies that showed improvement of IC/BPS symptoms with use of a steroid and 2) the hypothesized mechanism of action of steroids decreasing inflammation in the bladder.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT03463915

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