Cystoscopy

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A cystoscopy is a medical procedure performed by a urologist, a doctor who specializes in the urinary system. During a cystectomy, the urologist uses a special viewing instrument to look at the inside of the bladder, where urine is stored, and in the urethra, the channel through that urine exits the bladder.

A cystoscopy may also be used to remove objects that should not be there, such as a bladder stone, or to take a biopsy (tissue sample) of the bladder lining to analyze it in the laboratory for more information. This procedure can also help place a catheter, which is a thin drainage tube for urine.

Purposes of Cystoscopy

Cystoscopy is also an important tool to look for abnormalities in your bladder and its lining. The procedure primarily aims to: 

  • Look for symptoms such as blood in the urine.
  • Diagnose an overactive bladder resulting in pain when urinating.
  • Find the cause of urinary tract infection.
  • Diagnose bladder diseases such as bladder cancer, bladder stones, and inflammation of the bladder (cystitis).
  • Remove small tumors.
  • Diagnose an enlarged prostate.

Who Needs a Cystoscopy?

The cystoscopy procedure is ordered by the urologist when more detailed information on the conditions of the inside of the lower urinary tract. This procedure is most often used to check for problems in the bladder and its lining. The procedure is also an important tool for identifying what might be causing the abnormal problem, such as:

  • Frequent urinary tract infections (UTIs)
  • Hematuria, or blood in the urine
  • Urinary frequency, or urinating more than 8 times a day
  • Urinary urgency, or a strong urge to urinate
  • Urinary retention, or when the bladder does not empty completely
  • Urinary incontinence, or urine leakage
  • Pain or burning before, during, or after urination
  • Trouble starting the flow of urine, completing urination, or both
  • Abnormal cells found in a urine sample

Cost Estimation for Cystoscopy

The cost for cystoscopy may vary — depending on the hospital that provides the procedure. Each hospital and clinic usually offers a variety of service packages depending on your diagnostic needs as well as your financial ability.

For more details regarding the cost estimation for cystoscopy testing, please contact Smarter Health.

Pre-Cystoscopy

Before the cystoscopy procedure, there is a step-by-step process that you should know, which are: 

  • Before scheduling a cystoscopy procedure, you should let your doctor know about any complaints or problems with your bladder and urinary. You should also let your doctor know about your past surgery, medical history, and a family or personal history of cancer.
  • You are allowed to eat or consume any food or beverages before the procedure.
  • If you have performed the cystoscopy procedure in a different location, you should inform your doctor and share the results with him or her. This is necessary to compare your past test results with the most recent one
  • Ask when you will receive the results 

During Cystoscopy

Cystoscopy uses a cystoscope — which is a thin tube with a camera and light on the end. This device allows your doctor to examine the insides of your urinary tract. There are two types of cystoscopy, namely rigid cystoscopy and flexible cystoscopy. Your doctor choose one based on your diagnostic needs

  • Flexible cystoscopy
    Flexible cystoscopy uses a thin cystoscope that is flexible and elastic. Before the procedure begins, you will be asked to undress from the waist down and put on a hospital gown. You may be asked to pee into a container so it can be checked for an infection. The procedure may be delayed if a urine infection is found. A flexible cystoscope has optical fibers in it, a light and a camera attached to it. Due to its flexibility, it can bend the tube as it passes through the urethra. This procedure is generally performed under local anesthesia. Thus, you will remain awake while it is carried out. You may use a flexible cystoscopy procedure if your doctor only wants to look inside the bladder to examine your bladder and identify the symptoms.
  • Rigid cystoscopy
    Rigid Cystoscopy does not use a bendy tube. This procedure also has a light and a camera attached to the tube. Since a cystoscope that does not bend is used, you’re either put to sleep for the procedure or the lower half of your body is numbed while it’s carried out. You usually use rigid cystoscopy if a biopsy is required or require treatment for your bladder problem.

Understanding Your Cystoscopy Results

You may usually get results within 1 or 2 weeks since the follow-up procedure. To understand the results, your doctor will explain the analysis and diagnosis of the procedure performed. If the results indicate complications or the possibility of other more dangerous diseases, you may require further testing and treatment.

Benefits and Risks of Cystoscopy Testing

The main benefit of cystoscopy is for your doctor to see inside of your bladder. Your doctor will also be able to see clearly the smallest part of your bladder and urinary tract. Cystoscopy is the most reliable procedure in helping doctors provide accurate data about a patient’s urinary system. This is very useful to provide an accurate diagnosis.

The majority of people have no specific problems after undergoing a cystoscopy, but as with any medical procedure, there are risks that may occur, such as burning sensation while urinating. You may also experience a slight bloodstain for a day or two. Drinking lots of water can help overcome this. Your doctor will ask you to drink twice as much as usual during the first 24 to 48 hours.

Under certain conditions, cystoscopy may lead to serious conditions if left untreated. When this happens, you must immediately inform your doctor.

  • Continuous Bleeding 
  • Blood clots in your urine
  • Painful urination 

Another problem that may arise, even if it is unlikely, is an infection. Symptoms of infection may include:

  • Increased urinary frequency
  • Burning sensation when urinating.
  • Foul-smelling and cloudy urine 

If symptoms of the infection have occurred, you should immediately see your doctor. Your doctor will prescribe antibiotics to treat the infection.

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