“Why does my bladder hurt?”

Published: September 10, 2020
person holding abdomen with text why does my bladder hurt

When it comes to a bruised knee or a cut on your hand – you know very clearly what the source of pain is. External injuries or conditions are just easier that way. But when it comes to internal discomfort – it’s harder to pinpoint the cause.

On a day-to-day basis, we’re relatively aware of our bladders – because they indicate throughout the day that they need to be emptied. But when our bladders become painful or bladder functions become uncomfortable – that’s something to pay extra attention to. Your bladder shouldn’t be a source of pain. 

So, if you’re dealing with bladder pain, what are some of the potential causes?

Possible Reason #1: Urinary Tract Infection

You’re probably somewhat familiar with what a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) is. They occur when bacteria enters the urinary tract and causes an infection somewhere along the way. UTIs are often marked by burning during urination and the frequent urge to empty your bladder. They are also sometimes associated with pelvic or bladder pain. 

A quick visit to your doctor can help pinpoint if you have a UTI – and if you do, usually an antibiotic is all that’s necessary to clear it up. Ignoring UTI symptoms isn’t advisable because it gives the infection the opportunity to spread and cause more damage. 

Read more about UTIs here.

Possible Reason #2: Interstitial Cystitis

Interstitial Cystitis (IC) is another potential cause for bladder pain, but it is much less common, less well known, and isn’t associated with a clear cause. Similar to a UTI, an increased sense of frequency and urgency can accompany IC. This condition varies from person to person and as a result is difficult to diagnose and treat. Consequently, it’s important to work with an expert who has experience with diagnosing IC. If you do have IC, your urologist will help come up with a customized treatment plan to address your individual symptoms and lifestyle. 

Read more about Interstitial Cystitis here.

Possible Reason #3: Bladder Cancer

While most commonly accompanied by hematuria (blood in the urine), bladder cancer can also be marked by abdominal pain, pain during urination, and increased urgency. If bladder cancer is suspected, your urologist will conduct a variety of tests to issue a diagnosis, and a treatment plan will follow.

Read more about bladder cancer here. 

As you can see – different urological conditions have overlapping symptoms. Pain during urination could mean a variety of things and the same applies when it comes to general bladder discomfort.

If you’re experiencing any troubling urological symptoms, don’t panic and jump to the worst case scenario. It could be any of the above conditions, or another condition altogether. What’s important is that you don’t ignore your symptoms. Visiting a urologist can help you get an accurate diagnosis which is the first step towards finding relief. From there, your doctor will work with you to explain what’s going on and offer an appropriate treatment plan.

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