What is it?
Cystoscopy means examining the inside of the bladder. It is performed using a small telescope.
Why is it ordered?
Cystoscopy is used to diagnose some abnormalities in the bladder, including abnormal growths, ulcerations, abnormal anatomy, scarring or presence of calcifications (stones).
What can I expect before and during the procedure?
Cystoscopy can be performed under local anesthetic only, oral sedation (Xanax or related medication), IV conscious sedation or general anesthetic and it takes approximately 10-15 minutes.
Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your scheduled procedure. Also allow approximately 20-30 minutes to wake up after the conscious sedation.
Occasionally there is an area of the bladder which needs to be biopsied. This will be done with a small biopsy instrument if necessary.
What are the risks and complications?
Cystoscopy is a relatively safe procedure. Extremely rarely, a bladder may be perforated during a cystoscopy and this would require an open procedure to suture the hole closed and a catheter for a few weeks after to keep it empty while it heals. This occurs in well under 1% of cases.
What can I expect after my procedure?
If the procedure was done in the office under local anesthesia or sedation, you will be able to go home when the physician deems appropriate (typically within an hour or so). You should be sure you have someone to drive you home. Please refrain from making any important personal or financial decisions for 24 hours after IV sedation because it can mildly affect judgment and reasoning for that period of time.
For a day or two after, you may have some burning when you pass urine for the first few times. This should settle quickly. You may notice some blood in the urine for a short while. If a cystoscopy is not adequate to rule out abnormalities you may require further tests.