A cystoscopy may be performed when urodynamics testing fails to duplicate your symptoms, or if you are experiencing pain or cystitis (inflammation of the bladder), or when urinalysis reveals a disease process.
The cystoscopy is useful in identifying the presence of bladder lesions, such as cysts or tumor, diagnosing and evaluating urinary tract disorders and bladder infections, and can help determine the cause of pain during urination.
The test is done in the hospital as an outpatient procedure, and usually only takes 5-20 minutes.
The urethra is cleansed. A local anesthetic is applied. The scope is then inserted through the urethra into the bladder. Water or salt water (saline) is injected through the cystoscope to fill the bladder. As this occurs, you will be asked to describe the feeling. Your answer will reveal information about your condition.
As fluid fills the bladder, it stretches the bladder wall. This lets your health care provider see the entire bladder wall. You will feel the need to urinate when the bladder is full. However, it must remain full until the examination is complete.
If any tissue appears abnormal, a small sample can be taken (biopsy) through the cystoscope and sent to a lab for analysis.
You may feel slight discomfort when the cystoscope is passed through the urethra into the bladder. You will feel an uncomfortable, strong need to urinate when your bladder is full. You may feel a quick pinch if a biopsy is taken. After the cystoscope is removed, the urethra may be sore. You may feel a burning sensation during urination for a day or two.
You should make arrangements for someone to take you home from the hospital.