If you’re experiencing incontinence, painful urination, and other genitourinary symptoms and your primary care physician has referred you to a urologist for a cystoscopy, you want to get a basic idea of what the procedure is, such as whether it can be done in office.
In this blog post, we’ll delve into cystoscopy to learn about its purpose, what it involves, and whether you can conveniently have it done in a urology clinic.
What to Expect During a Cystoscopy Procedure
Cystoscopy is a procedure your urologist carries out to study the lining of your bladder and urethra – the tubular organ that transports your urine out of your body through your penis. Cystoscopy enables your urologist to diagnose and treat cystitis (inflammation), bladder stone/s, bladder cancer, and prostate enlargement. In some cases, the procedure is also done to remove bladder tumors.
Cystoscopy takes anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes. The process can be done in a urology clinic, under local anesthesia; or in a hospital under sedation or general anesthesia. Your urologist will likely have you take antibiotics prior to and after the procedure to prevent infection.
Before the procedure, you will need to urinate to empty your bladder. You will then need to lie down on a table and position your feet in a pair of stirrups, with your knees bent. Your urologist will then insert a thin, hollow viewing instrument (cystoscope) into your urethra and slowly move it into your bladder. If tissue samples need to be taken or surgical tools passed into your bladder, a larger scope may be required.
The cystoscope is equipped with a lens that works to magnify the inner surfaces of the urethra and bladder. A special video camera over the lens projects the images onto a video screen, enabling your doctor to examine these organs thoroughly. Your doctor will use a sterile solution to inflate your bladder to have a better look inside. If necessary, your doctor may take tissue samples for lab testing or perform other procedures.
After your cystoscopy, you may be able to resume your normal activities once sedation or general anesthesia has worn off.
Minor side effects include a burning sensation while urinating, frequent urination for the next few days, or slight bleeding from your urethra that appears bright pink in your urine or on toilet tissue. Any discomfort you may feel can be relieved by drinking 16 ounces of water each hour for the first two hours to flush irritants from your bladder and by taking an over-the-counter pain reliever. You can also take a warm bath unless your doctor advises against it.
Results of your cystoscopy may either be available immediately after your procedure or discussed at a follow-up appointment. If a biopsy was done, your doctor may provide you with the results when the tests are completed.
Urology Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona
If you live in Phoenix, Arizona and are scouting around for a reputable urology clinic near you, look no further than Ironwood Urology.
Dr. Desiderio Avila, Jr., our board-certified urologist and men’s health expert, offers a wide range of in-office services, including cystoscopy, to fulfill his commitment to providing convenient, efficient, and comprehensive care to the men in his community.