Cystoscopy is an outpatient procedure in which doctors examine the inside of the bladder and urethra, the body's tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside. For the examination the doctor uses a cystoscope, a long, thin flexible instrument that includes a tiny lens, a light on the end, and potentially, some tiny tools. The lens magnifies the lining of the urethra and bladder, the hollow organ that holds urine passed from the kidneys. Cystoscopy is performed to determine the cause of various urinary problems, including frequent urinary tract infections, blood in the urine, frequent and urgent need to urinate, abnormal cells found in a sample of urine, painful urination, chronic pelvic pain, or interstitial cystitis or painful bladder syndrome, urinary blockage, a kidney stone in the urinary tract, or an unusual growth. The procedure includes a local anesthetic to numb sensations as the doctor inserts the cystoscope into the urethra and guides it into the bladder. Sterile saline or water is inserted to stretch the bladder, providing a more complete examination of the bladder wall. The examination usually takes 15 to 30 minutes. Many cystoscopes have extra channels within the sheath to insert other small instruments that can be used to treat or diagnose urinary problems.
As part of the UAB Division of Women's Reproductive Healthcare, UAB Obstetrics and Gynecology’s services range from complete obstetric care to the medical and surgical treatment of complicated gynecological concerns. We work closely with the UAB Medicine Interventional Radiology team to diagnose and treat your condition, using the latest and most accurate technology and imaging methods, including fluoroscopy, ultrasound, and CT scans. Because UAB Medicine is an academic health center, patients may be offered participation in clinical research trials, which can give you access to new techniques and treatments that are not available elsewhere in the area. Our physicians are here for you at all times, from your first routine gynecological exam, to delivering your baby, to guiding you through menopause. When you establish a relationship with our doctors, you can rely upon that relationship throughout your lifetime.
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