A cystoscopy is a technique that helps your physician inspect the bladder lining and the urinary tube (urethra). 

When the cystoscope is placed and withdrawn from your urethra under a local anesthetic, you may experience a burning sensation and the need to pee. When water is pushed into your bladder to enlarge it, you may experience an unpleasant sense of fullness and an urge to pee.

You may experience a brief stinging sensation as the needle is inserted into your back for an epidural, followed by some mild back discomfort. Following general anesthesia, you may have minor muscular discomfort and nausea.

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What is cystoscopy and how is it performed?

A cystoscopy is a technology that enables your medical practitioner to check the lining of your bladder and the urine-borne tube (urethra). A lens-equipped hollow tube (cystoscope) is placed into your urethra and gently advanced into your bladder.

A local anesthetic jelly is used to numb your urethra during a cystoscopy, which can be done in a testing room. It can also be performed as an outpatient treatment under anesthesia. Another alternative is to have a cystoscopy while under general anesthesia in the hospital.

The sort of cystoscopy you’ll undergo depends on why you’re having it.

Cystoscopy Procedure

The patient will go to the restroom to empty his or her bladder just before the cystoscopy. The patient must change into a surgical gown and lie down on his back on a treatment table with his feet in stirrups. The nurse may prescribe antibiotics to help prevent a bladder infection.

The patient will be sedated at this stage. If he is given general anesthesia, he will be rendered unconscious for the duration of the procedure. Sedatives may be prescribed to help him relax if he requires local or regional anesthesia, and the urethra may be numbed using an anesthetic spray or gel.

Although the patient will still experience some sensations, the gel will make the operation less unpleasant. The scope will be lubricated with gel and carefully inserted into the urethra by the doctor. This may cause a mild burning sensation and the sensation of urination.

A flexible cystoscope is used with local anesthesia, whereas a rigid cystoscope is used with general or epidural anesthesia. The doctor will utilize a flexible scope if the operation is investigative. A somewhat thicker rigid scope is required for biopsies or other surgical operations. Surgical tools can pass through the larger scope.

The doctor examines the bladder using a lens. The bladder will be filled with a sterile solution. This facilitates the doctor’s vision of what’s happening within. The fluid might create an uncomfortable sense of urination.

The cystoscopy process may take less than five minutes if local anesthesia is used. The operation might take 15 to 30 minutes if the patient is sedated or given general anesthesia.

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How long does the pain last after a cystoscopy?

A few days after surgery, it is common to feel a burning sensation when urinating. You might have to urinate more often than normal. Don’t attempt to keep it since the blood might coagulate in your bladder and obstruct it. Blood is also frequent in the urine, in particular after you have a biopsy. Drinking a lot of water makes it easier to burn and bleed. Some individuals have more severe problems, including:

  • Swollen urethra: The most frequent issue. It’s hard to urinate. Contact your doctor if you cannot urinate for more than 8 hours following the operation.
  • Infection: Bacteria enter your urinary system and cause infection in uncommon circumstances. All symptoms include fever, the odd smell of urine, nausea, and lower back discomfort. Perhaps you need antibiotics.
  • Bleeding: Some patients have more severe bleeding.

After your treatment, your doctor may be able to share the results with you right away. Alternatively, your doctor may need to wait until a later appointment to discuss the results. If a biopsy is done to examine for bladder cancer during your cystoscopy, the sample is submitted to a laboratory. Your doctor will inform you of the results after the tests are completed.

Depending on the individual doing the operation, your anatomy, and any numbing medications used during the treatment, etc., some people may not experience discomfort or burning, while others do, and it may persist for many days. If you have any of the following symptoms that persist for more than 2-3 days, contact your doctor:

  • A fever of more than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit develops
  • Have bright red blood in your urine or tissue clots
  • Unable to void
  • Are suffering from stomach discomfort for a long time



Cystoscopes include lights and cameras that allow your doctor to check your urinary tract. The conventional rigid cystoscope and the flexible cystoscope are two types of cystoscopes in the field. Depending on the aim of the examination, the scope is selected. A cystoscopy is typically painless, however, it might be unpleasant at times.

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Dr. Jay Mehta Fertility and IVF Specialist In Mumbai

Dr. Jay Mehta

Fertility and IVF Specialist


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Dr. Jay Mehta is the Scientific Director of Shree IVF Clinic. He is a well-known Fertility and IVF Specialist and also among few doctors in the country who specializes in Embryology and Andrology.

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