What is a cystoscopy?

Visualisation of the bladder from the urethra using a cystoscope is called cystoscopy. Performed by a urologist, this technique allows us to obtain a clear image of the bladder. The main goals of cystoscopy are:

  • The diagnosis of bladder infection
  • The diagnosis of bleeding in bladder
  • Obtaining tissue biopsy or sample/li>
  • The diagnosis of bladder disorders
  • Measuring the capacity of the bladder
  • Removing foreign bodies or stones from the urinary tract
  • Finding tumours in the urinary tracts
  • Collecting sterile urine samples, etc.

Patients with the following symptoms could require cystoscopy:

  • Urinary incontinence
  • Hematuria
  • Urinary hesitation
  • Painful urination
  • Recurrent urinary tract infections
  • Prostate hypertrophy
  • Kidney stones
  • Bladder cancer
  • Interstitial cystitis
  • Chronic pelvic pain
  • Overactive bladder
  • Foreign bodies in the urinary tract

How a cystoscopy is performed ?

Cystoscopy is performed by a urologist using a cystoscope. Cystoscopy is usually done under local anesthetic. It is rarely performed under spinal or general anesthesia. There is no need to fast prior to the operation. It is best to empty the bladder before the procedure. It is not painful. People usually report feeling discomfort or a burning sensation. This only lasts for a few minutes.

The cystoscope is half the diameter of the urethra. It is introduced into the bladder via the urethra. A video camera is joined to the cystoscope and the image is then projected onto the monitor. A sterile liquid is introduced into the bladder to ensure a clear image of the bladder wall. Other instruments are also introduced with the cystoscope in order to perform a biopsy or to remove foreign bodies.

Pain, hematuria, and painful urination are the most common complaints from patients having undergone the cystoscopy procedure.

What are the Side Effects of a Cystoscopy ?

  • Allergic reactions to the anesthesia
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Urethral stricture due to the formation of scar tissue
  • Damage or tearing of the urethra, bladder, or ureter walls
  • Urinary retention
  • Prolonged pain and swelling (several hours to several days)

How to prepare for a cystoscopy ?

  • No food restrictions apply if the patient opts for local anesthesia
  • Empty the bladder before the procedure
  • Do not be afraid; cystoscopy is not life threatening
  • Follow the doctor’s instructions

What are the recommendations after a cystoscopy?

  • Drink plenty of water in the hours following the exam to reduce the risk of infection.
  • A dose of antibiotic may also be prescribed after cystoscopy to further reduce the risk of infection.
  • Notify the clinic if a burning problem becomes more severe after 48 hours. A urine test and a urine culture can be offered with a prolonged antibiotic prescription.

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