Psychological profile of Taiwanese interstitial cystitis patients


Alex TL Lin md, Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, Taipei Veterans General Hospital no. 201, Sec. 2, Shih-Pai Road, Taipei 112, Taiwan. Email:


Objectives:  The correlation between anxiety and interstitial cystitis has, as best we know, not yet been reported on. The present study investigated the psychological profile, including anxiety and depression, of patients suffering from interstitial cystitis (IC).

Methods:  A total of 47 IC patients, all of whom met National Institute of Arthritis, Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) criteria, plus a group of 31 age-matched, asymptomatic women received a structured interview on depression (Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression) and also on anxiety symptoms (Hamilton Rating Scale for Anxiety). IC patients also completed questionnaires relating to IC symptom severity, including urgency and frequency (visual analog scale) and O'Leary Sant index.

Results:  A total of 85% of our IC patients featured significant affective symptoms. The average depression scores were 16.6. Fifteen patients (31.9%) featured mild depressive symptoms, five (10.6%) had mild to moderate and 20 (42.6%) had moderate to severe depression symptoms. The mean anxiety score was 21.0, with 21 (44.7%), nine (19.1%) and 17 (36.2%) patients revealing mild, mild to moderate, and moderate to severe anxiety symptoms, respectively. Further, IC patients reported a significantly greater extent of depression and anxiety than was the case for controls. Pain scale and O'Leary Sant index were significantly correlated to anxiety and depression score.

Conclusions:  Most of our IC patients feature significant depression and anxiety. The extent of affective symptoms would appear to correlate well with IC symptom severity.