cystoscopyWhat is a cystoscopy?

A cystoscopy is an investigation done with a rigid or flexible cystoscope or “camera”, evaluating the urethra and bladder under direct vision. This can be done under local anaesthetic, sedation or general anaesthetic. Further procedures including dilatations, biopsies, diagnostic evaluations of the upper urinary tract (retrograde pyelogram), treatments of urinary tract stones, and resections of tumours can be performed at the same time.

Why would your urologist recommend a cystoscopy?

A cystoscopy can be performed as a diagnostic test or as treatment for certain conditions.

Reasons for diagnostic cystoscopies include:

  • Investigating causes of haematuria (blood in urine)
  • Lower urinary tract symptoms
  • Follow up after previous bladder tumour resection
  • Recurrent urinary tract infections
  • Urinary fistulae
  • Chronic pelvic pain

Common conditions treated during cystoscopy include:

  • Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)
  • Bladder tumour resection
  • Treatment of urethral strictures
  • Removal of Bladder stones
  • Treatment of Vesico-ureteric reflux


What to expect during a cystoscopy

An antibiotic will usually be administered orally or intravenously
Always remember to inform your doctor about known allergies


Local anaesthetic

  • A local anaesthetic gel will be instilled via the urethra
  •  A mostly painless passage of the scope via the urethra, with some discomfort often experienced at the prostatic urethra / bladder neck area.
  •  An evaluation of the entire bladder with further treatments as indicated

 Sedation / General anaesthetic

  • Similar to above, with the added effect of the sedatives and/or general anaesthetic
  • Remember to not eat or drink for at least 8 hours before the procedure
  • Recovery time in hospital
  • Remember to arrange transport if performed as day case

What to expect after a cystoscopy

  •  Visible blood and/or clots in urine
    – Drink as much fluid as possible after the procedure to aid with washout of clots
  • Burning urine and/or other irritative urinary tract symptoms
  • Monitor for signs of urinary tract infection
    – Contact your doctor should signs or symptoms develop
  • Keep follow up appointments as arranged with your urologist