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Research Article

Correlations of Interstitial Cystitis/Painful Bladder Syndrome with Female Sexual Activity


PurposeWe investigated how the symptoms of interstitial cystitis/painful bladder syndrome (IC/PBS) are correlated with the sexual activity of these patients.Materials and MethodsA total of 87 patients were included in this study; 18 patients were diagnosed with IC and the other 69 had PBS. The diagnosis was made on the basis of the concept of IC/PBS proposed by the ICS in 2002. Patients were asked to fill in a Bristol female lower urinary tract symptom questionnaire, and symptoms were rated on a scale of from 1 to 4 or 5. Pearson's correlation coefficient was used to analyze the correlation of pain and urinary symptoms with quality of life and sexual activity.ResultsThe average age of the patients was 51±14.7 years (range, 28-74 years). Age and vulvodynia were positively correlated with one another (r=0.232), and there was a negative correlation between age and dyspareunia (r=-0.302). Among the items regarding IC/PBS and sexual activity, frequency showed a positive correlation with vulvodynia (r=0.258) in addition to an inhibited sex life (r=0.403). Urgency showed a positive correlation with an inhibited sex life (r=0.346). Vulvodynia showed a positive correlation with an inhibited sex life (r=0.259) and dyspareunia (r=0.401). The main symptoms of IC/PBS (frequency, urgency, and pelvic pain) showed a positive correlation with almost all items related to quality of life (p<0.05).ConclusionsFrequency, urgency, and various types of pain are negatively correlated with the sexual activity of patients. This suggests that physicians should consider sexual function in the management of patients with IC/PBS.