Is interstitial cystitis an allergic disorder?: A case of interstitial cystitis treated successfully with anti-IgE

Authors


Tai June Yoo, md, phd, University of Tennessee, 956 Court Ave. Room B318 Memphis, TN 38163, USA. Email: tyoo@utmem.edu

Abstract

Abstract  Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a chronic disorder diagnosed by symptomatology of pelvic pain and urinary frequency, which are extremely variable and unpredictable fluctuating among patients. IC has recently been found combined with some allergic disorders and histopathologic abnormalities resembling that of allergic disorders, including mast cell activation, histamine release and eosinophil infiltration. Therefore, it could be cautiously postulated that IC is one of the allergic disorders of the urogenital system. A 28-year-old Caucasian female patient, who was diagnosed with asthma and allergic rhinitis, suffered from bladder symptoms of frequency, urgency and pelvic pain for the past 3 years. The symptoms disturbed her every day and were intractable for treatment. Urologists concluded that she had interstitial cystitis. Specific immunotherapy (SIT) was recommended for her allergic symptoms. While taking specific immunotherapy, she had anaphylaxis. She still had the reaction even with the 1000-fold diluted shot of SIT. Omalizumab was used for her allergic symptoms and possible prevention of anaphylactic reaction to SIT. Interestingly, she reported that her urogenital symptoms had subsided since omalizumab had been started. According to the published literature, we postulate that interstitial cystitis might be one of the IgE mediated, mast cell driven allergic disorders of the urogenital system. Therefore, in this case, the patient’s bladder symptoms are successfully controlled primarily by anti-IgE therapy and the improvement could be maintained by SIT. We report, for the first time, a case of interstitial cystitis with allergic rhinitis and asthma, successfully treated by anti-IgE therapy and specific immunotherapy.

Ancillary