What Is a Cystoscopy?
A cystoscopy is a procedure where a flexible or rigid device (cystoscope) is inserted through the penis or the vaginal urinary tract into the bladder and possibly to the kidneys by a healthcare provider. The cystoscope is pencil-thin, quite long, and is used to view the inner surface of the bladder and kidneys. It is equipped with lenses similar to a microscope or telescope. A cystoscopy involves general or local anesthesia, or an anesthetic jelly flushed through the bladder for pain management, and takes approximately twenty minutes.
Who Needs a Cystoscopy?
A healthcare provider may recommend a cystoscopy for frequent urinary tract infections, blood in the urine (hematuria), loss of bladder control (incontinence), unusual cells found in urine sample, painful urination, chronic pelvic pain, urinary blockage, narrowing of the urinary tract, stone in the urinary tract, unusual growth, polyp, tumor, or cancer.
How is a Cystoscopy performed?
When a cystoscopy is performed, the patient may receive a spinal or general anesthetic. The tip of the cystoscope is gently inserted into the urethra and slowly glides into the bladder. Sterile water, saline, or glycine solution flows through the cystoscope and fills the bladder. This stretching of the bladder gives the healthcare provider a clear view of the bladder wall. The procedure takes about twenty minutes and patients may leave the hospital when they have urinated on their own. Small amounts of blood may appear in urine for up to forty-eight hours. Patients are asked to increase fluids by a quart a day above their normal intake for one week. A follow-up appointment, with your healthcare provider is required within a few weeks of the cystoscopy.