Cystoscopy – Symptoms
Symptoms which may lead a doctor to perform a cystoscopy are related to diseases of the bladder or urethra. In general, a urologist may perform a cystoscopy when:
- You are experiencing symptoms like frequent urination, painful urination, bleeding when peeing, leaking or peeing when you are not trying
- You are frequently contracting urinary tract infections
- To check for an enlarged prostate, bladder stones, inflammation and cancer
- To treat or remove small tumours, treat blockages, or inject medicine into the bladder
Cystoscopy – Causes
There are two types of cystoscopies which may be performed by a doctor:
- Flexible cystoscopy – This is done when the doctor only wants to look inside your bladder. It involves using a pencil-thin bendy cystoscope and is performed under local anaesthesia
- Rigid cystoscopy – When the doctor wants to perform a treatment in your bladder, he may perform a rigid cystoscopy. This is done using a slightly wider device and under general anaesthesia (lower part of the body is numbed)
Cystoscopy – Diagnosis
A Vaginal Cyst is usually discovered during an annual visit to a gynaecologist. You may need further diagnosis to check whether it is benign.
- A physical exam by your doctor is absolutely essential for determining the type of cyst.
- In case you develop a cyst under your bladder or urethra, you may need CT scans or an MRI to check if the cyst-growth has extended into the organs.
- A biopsy may be done to check if the cyst is cancerous (usually done for females over age 40)
Cystoscopy – Treatment
You shall be asked to empty your bladder before the procedure. The doctor shall ask you to lie down with your feet up in stirrups. The doctor shall insert the cystoscope through the urethra using a lubricant. The inside of the bladder shall be numbed using an anaesthetic spray or gel. If the doctor is performing a biopsy or surgical procedure, more instruments may be passed using a bigger cystoscope. The doctor shall fill up the bladder using a sterile solution to get a clearer picture of the inside of the bladder. The entire process will take 15-30 minutes depending on the type and purpose of the cystoscopy.
Cystoscopy – Risks & Complications
A cystoscopy has become a routine procedure and serious complications which may occur are rare.
Some of the risks could be:
- Contracting a urinary tract infection (UTI) – the doctor will treat these using antibiotics
- Swollen urethra – This is a condition in which you may face difficulty in urinating after undergoing a cystoscopy. If the condition persists for 8 hours or more, the doctor shall insert a catheter to enable you to empty your bladder temporarily.
- Bleeding – Bleeding may occur in very rare cases. Please talk to your doctor if you have persistent blood in your urine after a cystoscopy.
Cystoscopy – Pre Op Care
The doctor may give you antibiotics to prevent any bladder infections before a cystoscopy. You may also be asked to get a urine test done to check for infections. If a UTI is found, the doctor may delay the cystoscopy until you have recovered from it. There is no need to come with a full bladder as the doctor shall ask you to empty it.
Cystoscopy – Post Op Care
- A flexible cystoscopy will allow you to resume normal activities almost immediately. You will be able to exercise, work, drive, have sex the same day.
- Post a rigid cystoscopy, you may experience
- Burning sensation while peeing
- Mild blood in your urine – the doctor will ask you to drink lots of water and empty your bladder frequently to make the blood go away
- Need to pee more often than usual
These symptoms normally take 1-2 days to recover from after which you can resume normal activities. It is advised to have someone with you for the first 24 hours after a cystoscopy.
You can also take mild painkillers to reduce discomfort.
You should contact your doctor if
- The bleeding lasts longer than 1-2 days
- Urinating is very painful
- You see blood clots in your urine or very hazy urine
- You have trouble peeing
- Your urine smells bad
- You get fever or have a pain in your lower back or side