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interstitial cystitis &
bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS)
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Glossary of terms: F  
Faecal impaction Occurs when a mass of stool (faeces) remains packed in the rectum and is not discharged from the body. Impaction can irritate or block the urethra and cause pressure on or irritation of the bladder.  
Faecal incontinence The loss of bowel control causing leakage of stool from the rectum.  
Faeces The body’s solid waste matter (stool) discharged from the bowel (intestines) via the anus.  
Fascia Connective tissue covering the organs and supporting the viscera.  
FDA The US Food and Drug Administration. This agency is responsible for approving all medicines before they are made available to doctors and patients in the United States of America.  
Fibromyalgia Fibromyalgia (FM, old name fibrositis) is a chronic, debilitating condition with widespread musculoskeletal pain and tenderness. The term fibromyalgia means pain in the soft fibrous tissues of the body: muscles, ligaments and tendons. People with fibromyalgia say that their body and muscles ache all over. Typical of fibromyalgia are: diffuse pain and absence of inflammation in the tissues. Fibromyalgia may be accompanied by a range of symptoms including:morning stiffness, extreme fatigue, sleep disturbances, irritable bowel syndrome, facial pain or pain around the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), pelvic pain, bladder disorders. Patients with FM are also prone to tingling, numbness, dizziness and cognitive or memory disorders. FM can vary in severity from person to person: some patients may have a mild form of discomfort, but some a very severe and disabling form of FM with extreme fatigue and pain. Like PBS/IC, the course of this condition can be variable with exacerbations and remissions.  
Fibroid A benign (non-cancerous) tumour of fibrous and muscular tissue. One or more may develop in the wall of the uterus. Fibroids often cause pain and excessive menstrual bleeding. They may become very large. Some fibroids can be removed surgically. IN some cases surgical removal of the uterus (hysterectomy) may be necessary.  
Fibromyoma See fibroid.  
Fibrosis Abnormal formation of fibrous tissue, thickening and scarring of connective tissue, usually a result of inflammation or injury.

Finasteride A drug that causes shrinkage of the prostate gland.  
Fistula An abnormal hole or connecting passage between two hollow organs or a hollow organ and the exterior of the body that can be caused by injury, infection or disease. A fistula can lead to urinary or faecal incontinence. Vesicovaginal fistulas (between the bladder and vagina) are common in developing countries as a result of childbirth complications.  
Flare Reappearance of symptoms. Exacerbation of symptoms. Occurring intermittently.  
Foley catheter A flexible plastic tube (catheter) with a small balloon at one end. The balloon is inflated when the catheter is inserted into the bladder. Used for continuous drainage of the bladder.  
Foreskin Foreskin (also prepuce): the fold of skin that covers the end of the penis (glans).  
Frequency (urinary) Urination eight or more times a day, but drinking habits and level of perspiration should also be taken into consideration when assessing what is normal frequency in any individual.  
Fulguration The removal or coagulation of diseased tissue or lesions using a high frequency electric current applied with a needle-like electrode. Used in selected PBS/IC patients to burn away Hunner’s ulcers or lesions. When the area heals, the dead tissue falls off, leaving new healthy tissue behind. Carried out under anaesthesia.  
Functional bladder capacity Amount of urine voided as assessed from a frequency volume chart.  
Fungi Fungi (singular fungus): Simple spore-producing organisms that include yeast infections such as thrush or candida.  


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