American Foundation for Urologic Disease names Senior PGA Tour champion Bruce Devlin Presidential Award winner

June 04, 2001

Organization recognizes golfer's commitment to raising awareness about urologic disease

Anaheim, CA, June 5, 2001 - The American Foundation for Urologic Disease (A.F.U.D.) has presented Senior PGA champion Bruce Devlin with its Presidential Award for his efforts as a public advocate and spokesperson for the organization's "On Course for Bladder Health" campaign. Devlin accepted the award last night, Monday, June 4, at A.F.U.D.'s annual Benefit and Gala, which featured a special performance by the legendary Beach Boys.

Launching today at the American Urological Association's annual meeting, "On Course for Bladder Health" is a national initiative designed to raise awareness about interstitial cystitis (IC) and overactive bladder, two potentially debilitating bladder conditions. Joining Devlin as spokespeople for the campaign are last year's Presidential Award winners, LPGA champions Terry-Jo Myers and Dottie Pepper.

"The Presidential Award is given to an individual or corporation that has demonstrated a commitment to helping A.F.U.D. achieve its goal of preventing and curing urologic disease," said A.F.U.D President David G. McLeod, M.D., J.D. "Bruce Devlin, through his involvement in the 'On Course for Bladder Health' campaign, is helping to educate the public about conditions like interstitial cystitis (IC) and overactive bladder. We are proud and delighted to present our Presidential Award to Bruce for having the courage and conviction to speak out about bladder health."

Devlin, a 10-time PGA champion and television sports analyst, explained that his own struggle with urinary problems influenced his decision to join the fight against bladder disease. Recently, he found himself awakening in the middle of the night to make frequent trips to the bathroom. Devlin grew increasingly frustrated and exhausted, which diminished his passion for golf and caused the overall quality of his life to deteriorate.

"At first, I thought these problems were just a normal part of aging, but now I realize that's just not true," said Devlin. "I want others to know that they don't have to suffer with these conditions. There are treatments out there that can help and I strongly urge people to talk to their doctors about available options."

Fellow spokesperson and three-time LPGA champion Terry-Jo Myers has suffered from interstitial cystitis (IC), a chronic and painful bladder condition, for more than 15 years, and shares Devlin's passion and dedication to raising awareness about bladder conditions.

"I suffered in silence for 10 years, thinking that there was nothing I could do to relieve the pain," said Myers. "I want to ensure that others affected by these conditions will not have to endure a similar fate. That's why I'm so grateful to A.F.U.D., ALZA Corporation and the LPGA for bringing bladder health to the forefront and lending their support to this campaign."

"On Course for Bladder Health" specifically highlights overactive bladder and IC, two frequently misunderstood and underdiagnosed bladder disorders. Overactive bladder affects more than 17 million Americans. The condition is marked by detrusor muscle instability causing symptoms that include urinary urgency and frequency, as well as the sudden/involuntary loss of bladder control. Overactive bladder is not only a medical condition, but also a problem that affects an individual's emotional and social well-being. Many sufferers become isolated or even housebound due to the fear and embarrassment of having wetting accidents in public. Overactive bladder can also disrupt sleep, social interaction, relationships and sexual activity.

Nearly half a million people in the United States are affected by IC, 90 percent of whom are women. Classic IC symptoms include the urgent and frequent need to urinate, as well as pelvic or bladder pain and pain during sex. Doctors frequently misdiagnose IC as a urinary tract infection and prescribe antibiotics, which prove ineffective. As a result, IC patients can often endure years of pain and frustration and consult numerous physicians before reaching a proper IC diagnosis.

The "On Course for Bladder Health" campaign provides educational materials to patients and physicians nationwide. The campaign also has established a toll-free, confidential hotline, 877-ON-COURSE and Web site, www.bladderhealth.net, where people can obtain information about overactive bladder and IC, and find out more about available treatment options.
-end-
The American Foundation for Urologic Disease (A.F.U.D.) is an international, non-profit, patient-based organization founded in 1987. A.F.U.D.'s mission is to prevent and cure urologic diseases through the expansion of research, education, public awareness and advocacy. National and international programs sponsored by the A.F.U.D. are enabling patients to work together with their physicians and health care providers to make informed treatment decisions.

Porter Novelli

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