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Gynecology and Obstetrics

What is a Cystoscopy?

Procedure, normally requested by urologists, is performed with the aim of evaluating whether there are abnormalities in the urinary tract

What is a Cystoscopy?

This procedure, normally requested by urologists, is performed with the aim of evaluating whether there are abnormalities in the urinary tract; and is performed through an exploration of the urinary bladder and urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body.

When can you request a cystoscopy?

Cystoscopy is, as we already mentioned, a routine procedure capable of detecting a wide range of diseases and conditions of the urinary tract.

Some of the main diseases that can be detected by this procedure are:

  • Bladder Cancer: This procedure allows the doctor to visualize the lining of the bladder for tumors, ulcers, or other abnormalities that may indicate the presence of cancer.

  • Bladder inflammation: If the study shows inflammation in the bladder area, it may be due to interstitial cystitis, a chronic condition of the urinary tract that causes symptoms such as pain and urinary urgency.

  • Recurrent Urinary Tract Infections: This is done to investigate the cause of recurrent urinary tract infections, as well as to evaluate for obstructions or abnormalities in the urethra or bladder that may predispose to infections.

  • Bladder stones: it can be used to visualize and remove stones or stones in the urinary bladder, which can be useful in cases of obstructions or associated urinary symptoms.

Step by Step: How a Cystoscopy is Performed

Cystoscopy does not require major intervention, it can be performed in an outpatient setting or in your urologist's office. It is usually carried out with the patient lying on a table with their legs elevated. Local anesthesia may be used to numb the urethra and make the procedure more comfortable.

The cystoscope, a thin tube with a light at the end, is inserted through the urethra and slowly advanced into the bladder. The doctor visualizes the mucosa of the bladder and urethra for abnormalities, and if necessary, biopsies or tissue samples can be taken.

Depending on the purpose of the cystoscopy, the procedure can take anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes.

What are the risks?

Although cystoscopy is generally considered a safe procedure, as with any medical procedure, there are some associated risks. Some of these risks include:

  • Urinary tract infections

  • Mild or moderate bleeding from the urethra or bladder, which is normal and resolves on its own

  • Injuries to the urethra or bladder

  • Allergic or adverse reactions to anesthesia

  • Discomfort or pain during the procedure

Can a cystoscopy be done in women?

Cystoscopy is a procedure that can be performed on both men and women. The anatomy of the urinary tract is similar in both genders, so this procedure is a diagnostic tool used in both cases to examine the urinary bladder and urethra.

In men, it diagnoses and monitors urinary tract infections, bladder stones, prostate diseases such as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or prostate cancer, and other lower urinary tract conditions.

In women, it detects urinary tract infections, interstitial cystitis, bladder cancer, congenital urinary tract anomalies, and other lower urinary tract conditions.

Remember that your doctor must explain the entire procedure and clarify all your doubts before performing any intervention. If you require a consultation, go to a specialist doctor.

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