Constant feeling of having to urinate
I had been making posts to the thread "UTI symptoms persist after treatment", but it was closed down because there were too many posts on this topic. I have been dealing with a miserable situation since August 25th. I had a UTI that started on that day, and after a week of Macrobid antibiotic, there were no more signs of infection in my urine. However, it is now 3 and 1/2 months later and I am still dealing with this constant miserable symptom of ALWAYS feeling like i need to urinate. It never goes away. I have been to a urologist, a gynecologist, and I have appointments with both an internist & a urogynecologist coming up in the next 2 weeks. I have had numerous urinalyses, urine cultures, 2 pelvic exams, a bladder ultrasound, a cystoscopy, and a CT scan. I have been prescribed both Detrol-LA and Flomax, and neither seem to help. I have an MRI scheduled for Tuesday this week & blood work scheduled for Wednesday. I am awaiting results of a vaginal culture & yet another urinalysis that was done on Thursday. So far, almost EVERY test they have done on me has been completely normal. The only things that they have found wrong are (1) the initial bacterial infection on Aug 25th (shown by bacteria, red & white blood cells & protein in my urine), and (2) microscopic amounts of red blood cells in my urine on 11/20 and 12/2. Other than those 2 things, it seems there is nothing wrong with me except for the CONSTANT feeling I have that I need to pee. I have been on bactrim antibiotic for 4 days now just in case there is a low-grade infection that is not being picked up in a urinalysis, or for a possible infection in the paraurethral glands (these are the glands on the outside of the urethra & can get infected but it can't be picked up by a urinalysis). My urologist wants me to stay on this antibiotic for at least 6 weeks because paraurethral gland infections take a long time to clear up, but after 4 days I have not yet noticed any improvement. The MRI they are doing this week will look for a possible urethral diverticulum (a "pocket" that can form next to the urethra & also can get infected). If none of these things end up being the cause of my misery, I am afraid I will be diagnosed with IC. My gynecologist is already telling me I have IC, but I believe the urologist is the better source of information on these things & he says my symptoms are not typical of IC. He also says people with IC usually do not have red blood cells in their urine. I just don't know what to believe anymore. Has anyone had similar problems? Any advice on what could be wrong or how to treat it? Thanks.