Flexible Cystoscopy M4510

 border=Email this page
  Print friendly page

Description:  Flexible cystoscopy (under local anaesthetic)

Code:  M4510

Your consultant has advised that you need a flexible cystoscopy so that he can look inside your bladder and this will be carried out at 11 Kendrick Road during an out-patient clinic. This is to help find out if your urinary symptoms are due to problems in the bladder or urethra.

The bladder is a muscular bag which when full is about the size of a grapefruit. It stores urine which comes from your kidneys. When you wish to pass water the muscle wall squeezes to urine out via the urethra. In women this is only about an inch long. In men it is much longer, passing through the prostate gland and down to the end of the penis. Both men and women have muscular valves called sphincters which control the flow.


No special preparation is required for a flexible cystoscopy. On the day of the procedure you may eat and drink as normal.

When you get to the clinic you will be asked to change into a gown which stops your clothes getting wet during the procedure. You will be asked to empty your bladder.

Although you do not need a general anaesthetic for a flexible cystoscopy, your urethra needs to be prepared with a local anaesthetic in the form of anaesthetic jelly. The jelly numbs and lubricates the urethra. The jelly takes about 5 minutes to work. Men may be asked to squeeze the tip of their penis to stop the jelly escaping for a minute or two.

The procedure

During a flexible cystoscopy a flexible tube containing a miniature telescope is passed along the urethra so that the consultant can examine the inside of your bladder and your urethra. The cystoscope consists of bundles of glass fibres which allow the telescope to bend freely and adjust itself to the bends particularly in the male urethra.

The genitals will be cleaned and covered with a paper sheet. The flexible cystoscope will have already been sterilized ready for the operation. Please do not be alarmed by the look of it, only the flexible tip goes inside you. Men may be asked to try and pass urine when the instrument reaches the sphincter below the prostate gland. This is because the sphincter will then naturally relax allowing the cystoscope to pass through more easily. There may be momentary stinging as the sphincter opens.

Once the cystoscope is in the bladder the consultant can twist the end so that he can have a look around. When your bladder is empty there are folds in the lining. Saline (salt water) is passed through the cystoscope to stretch out these folds so that the whole lining can be seen. It is natural that at the end of the examination you will feel that you need to pass water again.

The nurse will usually stay in the room during the whole of the examination. You may experience some mild discomfort but it should not last long. If you are getting more discomfort than you think you should have please tell the consultant.

You can expect to be told the results of your examination straight away. If you have any questions please ask.

Following your operation

You are unlikely to notice any serious side-effects from this procedure. You may find it uncomfortable to pass urine for a day or two, and you may pass some blood in your urine.

To minimise the risk of developing a urinary infection after the procedure:

  • Take the antibiotic tablets as directed. Finish the whole course.
  • Do not drink alcohol during this period or for 12 hours after the last antibiotic tablet.
  • Drink an extra 1 litre (2 pints) of water over what you would normally drink for the next 38 hours.

Seek medical advice if

  • You become unwell, especially if you develop a high temperature
  • The discomfort when passing urine persist for more than 4 days, or gets worse rather than getting better.
  • The bleeding in your urine persists for more than 2 weeks.
  • You are unable to pass urine.

For our charge for this procedure please see our Price List

Reading Urology Partnership
All rights reserved © 2013