Cystoscopy Urodynamics

What is cystoscopy?

A flexible cystoscopy is an examination of the bladder using a flexible fibre-optic telescope. This enables the doctor to examine the urethra and bladder without a general anesthetic. It is simple, quick and fairly painless procedure.

What is urodynamic testing?

Urodynamic tests measure bladder function and efficiency. The testing is done if a woman has problems with leaking urine. The test may help decide if changing behavior, medicine, or surgery is the best way to treat bladder problems. Urodynamics refers to a group of tests that are performed to examine the bladder’s ability to empty steadily and completely. This testing can also evaluate abnormal bladder contractions, bladder storage, and the flow of urine. These tests focus on the lower urinary tract, which includes the bladder, the urethra, and the sphincter muscles. The provider will order the tests if he or she suspects a problem in these areas.

Why is it done?

Increasing age, chronic illnesses, injury, and pregnancy can cause problems in the urinary system. The bladder and urethral muscles may become weaker with age, increased abdominal pressure, or a decrease in estrogen. Weak muscles may cause problems in emptying the bladder completely or more commonly, may cause urinary incontinence or leaking of urine. Reasons for urodynamic testing may include: 

  • Frequent urination 
  • Involuntary release of urine, also called Incontinence (could be leaking urine with coughing, sneezing, laughing) 
  • Sudden, strong urges to urinate 
  • Problems starting a urine stream 
  • Painful urination 
  • Problems emptying the bladder completely 
  • Recurrent urinary tract infections 
  • Prior to surgery.

What is involved?

  1. The patient will be instructed to arrive for testing with a full bladder. 
  2. She will provide a “clean catch” urine sample, and then will be asked to empty her bladder completely. 
  3. She will then be asked to undress from the waist down. She will then lie back on an exam table with her feet in stirrups, similar to the position for a pap test. A speculum will not be used. 
  4. A catheter will be placed into the urethra and then into the bladder and several measurements of both urine amounts and bladder and several measurements of both urine amounts and bladder pressures will be obtained. The entire test takes about 20 minutes. 
  5. Prophylactic Macrobid may be ordered after the procedure.

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