Phone 03 9347 9911
What is this procedure and why is it done?
Flexible cystoscopy is a visual examination of the bladder performed by a Urologist. A very small flexible telescope (approx 3mm in diameter) is used. When performed in the treatment room (as an outpatient), only local anaesthetic is required to make passage of the telescope more comfortable. The urethra (urine passage from the bladder) and bladder are fully examined. The urethra in a woman is only 3-4cm in length thereby passage is straightforward and usually very well tolerated.
No fasting or any special preparation is required. On arrival, you will be asked to empty your bladder. An antibiotic dose will be given to prevent infection. After changing into a suitable gown, the nurse will wash the genital region with antiseptic and place local anaesthetic jelly into the urethra to make it numb for the procedure.
The very small telescope (cystoscope) is gently eased into the urethral channel and then into the bladder. This is well tolerated, though there may be a minor degree of discomfort. Once the cystoscope has reached the bladder, the rest of the examination is performed without discomfort. After a complete inspection of the bladder, the urethra is then inspected as the telescope is withdrawn.
Where blood is present in the urine, recurrent infections or irritative conditions of the bladder or urethra are present, it is useful to perform cystoscopy to find out what condition is present and exclude serious causes of bladder symptoms. It is also possible to obtain biopsies and remove some foreign bodies using the flexible cystoscope.
What can I expect afterwards?
After the procedure you will get yourself dressed. Once you are fully dressed, you may be given a treatment plan on the basis of the findings and information will be given to you to get started on that plan of treatment. If required, an appointment will be made for follow-up and an arrangement for any biopsy results to be given to you when available.
What common problems can I expect afterwards?
There may be some mild discomfort passing urine afterwards. This has usually resolved by 24 hours. There may be slight bleeding though seeing a lot of blood in the urine is rare. If blood is visible resting and drinking an increased amount of water usually stops the problem. It is rare to experience any significant distress following the procedure. If you have a painful bladder condition the increase in pain which occurs with the procedure is typically short-lived, typically less than two days.