A Staged Approach to Managing IC Pain

Don’t forget to return every 30 days and continue your journey to healing and complete the next stage of the tool – you’ll be glad you did!

We understand that living with constant pain makes it very hard to focus on anything else, but we also know there are many strategies you can use to manage your pain. ICHope is ICA’s newest complimentary online program designed to help IC patients use a range of healthy strategies to manage or minimize pain and to cope with pain that does occur. We’ll show you how you can try these strategies—at your own pace, when you are ready—to help you manage pain from IC.

There are three main strategies for self management of IC pain. The first is finding and working with a healthcare provider who is committed to helping you. The second is figuring out—and then sticking with—self-care strategies that work for you. And the third is using healthy methods to stay hopeful and empowered.

ICHope is based on the science of behavior change, which asserts that people go through a series of stages in the process of changing their behavior. IC patients can use ICHope to assess which stage of change they are in and then receive stage-matched tools to help them manage pain. There are five stages of change:

Stage of Change Description
Precontemplation Not thinking about making a change or are not ready to change within the next 6 months.
Contemplation Planning to make a change within the next 6 months.
Preparation Being ready to start taking small steps towards change within the next 30 days.
Action Changing your behavior for less than 6 months.
Maintenance Changing your behavior for more than 6 months.

Start better managing your pain today. Learn more about ICHope.

ICA gratefully thanks the following people who generously contributed their time, knowledge, and expertise to the development of the ICHope Self Management Module.

Expert Consultants:

“Enabling patients with the tools they need to take charge of their pain not only improves their health, it allows them to regain control in their life. I think I speak for every patient when I say how truly exciting this one-of-a-kind program is for those experiencing IC pain.” Barbara Zarnikow
ICA Board Co-Chair
“In talking with people who’ve struggled with IC for years, I’ve seen that part of their strategy for success seems to be to focus on the positive, on what they can do to manage it.”Lee Claassen, CAE
ICA Executive Director
“What a great tool for both new and seasoned IC patients. It will be one of the first tools that I will suggest to IC patients.”Iliana
Patient Advocate
  • Tony Buffington, DVM, PhD, DACVN
  • Ragi Doggweiler, MD
  • Marina Ruzim, NP
  • Laura Santurri, PhD, MPH, CPH
  • Barbara Shorter, EdD, RD, CDN
  • Amy Stein, MPT, BCB-PMD

Volunteer Consultants:

  • Melanie Barton
  • Rhonda Garrett
  • Barbara Gordon, RD
  • Teresa McCoy
  • Kevin Noa
  • Linda Salin
  • Tammy Wilson
  • Jack Yarrington
  • Barbara Zarnikow

ICA Staff:

  • Lee Bryan Claassen, CAE
  • Amy Lestition, MA, CAE
  • Nicole Mehall
  • Anita Roach, MS

Authors/Program Developers – Pro-Change Behavior Systems, Inc.:

  • Deborah Levesque, PhD
  • Carol Cummins, M.Ed., MLIS
  • Lynne Broderick, MPH
  • Kevin Lague, MS

Pro-Change Behavior Systems, Inc. is a small research and development company founded in 1997 by James O. Prochaska, Ph.D., developer of the Transtheoretical Model of Behavior Change (Stages of Change Model).

ICHope Self Management Module was supported by the Cooperative Agreement Number 5U58DP002936-02 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Revised Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013