The Integrative Approach to Interstitial Cystitis (IAIC) works by identifying imbalances, both in terms of Western medicine and Chinese medicine, and integrates both clinical pictures in order to identify the causes behind the illness and formulate a protocol to assist the patient in regaining health.
The idea is to bring the internal (tissue and microbiological) environment back into healthy balance. This constant support will allow the body to make the necessary changes in order to rebalance itself. However, the process of nourishing and elimination needs to be sustained and treatment must be adjusted as the patient responds to it. Once this is accomplished, as long as the body is properly nourished with the correct diet and not aggravated by the numerous factors excluded during treatment, it will stay in balance and without symptoms.
Supplements are combined with a Chinese medicine and alternative Western understanding.
Patients will frequently encounter “die-off” symptoms that occur because toxins are given off with the elimination of elevated levels of microbes. This can occur anywhere in the body an it is important to understand because this can make the patient feel very sick, which they often confuse with becoming worse. Often those undergoing treatment will need to experience these symptoms in order to progress and get well. These symptoms may include rashes, cold or flu symptoms such as nausea, fever and chills, headache, sore throat, phlegm, vaginal discharge, unusually colorful bowel movement (with or without mucous), increased gas and bloating, etc. The possible symptoms are numerous, and these are only the basic few.
The patient's symptoms will decrease with time until they disappear. Understanding what adjustments are required and at what point is paramount to the successful treatment of IC. Dose changing is critical as the patient passes through various stages of improvement. Tracking this improvement and treating with the body instead of against it is important in allowing it to become stronger and more efficient on its own. This allows the person being treated to not become dependent upon a protocol, but rather to use it only for the period of time necessary to regain health.
Throughout treatment the patient is guided and positively reinforced so that he or she does not lose hope. The process is different for everyone. For some severe cases, it can last up to a year or more, while in others it can be almost minimal. Each case should be taken individually, as that is what IC is, a condition based upon the life and health experiences of each individual.