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A 60-year-old female asked:

There is controversy over if interstitial cystitis considered an autoimmune disease, or could it be part of a lupus flare? lupus causes inflamation.

2 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mary David
Specializes in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Not likely: There is a layer, the GAG layer in the bladder that protects against some of the chemicals in the urine which are irritating/inflammatory if they come in contact with the lower layers. In interstitial cystitis, that layer is absent. The questions revolve around what causes the loss of that layer. I have not seen any studies implicating lupus. Lupus can cause inflamation in any organ, however.
Dr. Carol Stauffer-munekata
Family Medicine 36 years experience
IC and Lupus: IC (Interstitial Cystitis) is inflammation of the Bladder Wall that can occur by itself or in conjunction with other autoimmune diseases, including Lupus, fibromyalgia, scleroderma, and Sjogren's Syndrome. Research has shown that IC patients are 30 Times more likely to have SLE (systemic lupus erthematosus). If you have IC, tests for Autoimmune conditions should be performed by your Doctor.

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Last updated Aug 5, 2017

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