- Alcohol can have a relaxing effect on muscle and a psychologically relaxing effect too, so that many sufferers feel better while under the influence.
- Alcohol increases urination. Generally, alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it increases urination and flushes water from the body. The more alcohol you drink, the more water your body loses. This is because when alcohol is consumed, it enters the bloodstream and causes the pituitary gland in the brain to block the creation of vasopressin (also known as the antidiuretic hormone). Without this chemical, the kidneys send water directly to the bladder instead of reabsorbing it into the body. This is why drinkers have to make frequent trips to the bathroom after urinating for the first time after drinking. According to studies, drinking about 250ml of an alcoholic beverage causes the body to expel 800-1000ml of water; that's four times as much liquid lost as gained. This diuretic effect decreases as the alcohol in the bloodstream decreases, but the after-effects help create a hangover.
- The day after drinking alcohol, the body needs to re-hydrate (get back the lost water urinated away), so the need for urination is temporarily suppressed. What little urine gets to the bladder/prostate area is therefore concentrated (high uric acid). Ouch! Drink as much water as you can the next day.
- 5% of alcohol is excreted unchanged by the kidneys, and alcohol is a solvent. Ouch!
- Alcohol is processed into the highly irritant chemical Acetaldehyde, some of which ends up in the bladder. Ouch!
- Alcohol is oxidized to acetic acid (vinegar) and then further metabolised, but some of that acetic acid ends up in the bladder too. Ouch!
- On another level, alcohol is a mast cell trigger. It causes mast cells to degranulate. Ouch!
- On another level, alcohol is a fermentation product (yeasts and molds). If you have an allergy to molds (common), alcohol can affect you badly.
- On yet another level, some alcohol contains gluten (eg beer) which flares some chronic prostatitis / chronic pelvic pain syndrome sufferers.
- The worst forms of alcohol are darker and have a high level of congeners (toxic fermentation byproducts).
Finally, from a paper on Interstitial Cystitis, a form of Urologic Chronic Pelvic Pain that overlaps with CPPS:
On a personal note, I have found that drinking alcohol (a couple of glasses of unoaked white wine per day) is enough, after a month or two, to provoke symptoms. And this after being symptom-free for many years!The Effect of Alcohol
Alcohol use as a potential trigger for IC/BPS symptoms was evaluated in a survey... They found that 94% of 535 patients responding reported that their bladder symptoms worsened when drinking various alcoholic beverages. While only 5% of patients reported flares lasting > 1 week, 75% of patients reported in increase in pain after drinking alcohol.
So in general, avoid alcohol.