When a person suffers from urinary infection, Cystoscopy is the suggested way to view inside the urinary bladder and urethra- a tube that transfers urine from the bladder to the outside of the body. Under this procedure, the doctor uses a hollow scope that has a lens to minutely examine the lining of the bladder and the urethra. The cystoscope is inserted inside the urethra and it gradually moves into the bladder.
Cystoscopy is also known as cystourethroscopy. It is mostly performed on outpatient procedure in which the urethra is numbed using local anesthesia. Cystoscopy is also performed in the hospital in which general or regional anesthesia is used. Depending on the reason for the procedure, the type of cystoscopy is done.
The kind of cystoscopy that is being used today is something that was developed centuries ago. Since the early times, it was an attempt to view the cavities of the body. Earlier in 1805, a prototype was Bozinni’s urethral tube which was a base for others as well. Patients were not feeling comfortable with the old technique. Further, it became difficult to operate for those who operate it. This was also dangerous for both the patient and the surgeon.
The instrument focused more on the goal of the operation and the method rather than the comfort of patients. The images that were formed were backwards and inverted; therefore the operator had to use his skill to correct it. The operators also used candlelight to illuminate the object and it appeared at a distance and small.
Later the lenses, prisms and incandescent light advanced, the cystoscopy also upgraded to Nitze’s prototype. Eventually, the fiber optics and digital imaging were invented, thus making cystoscope the more advanced one worldwide and giving a high quality image.
Cystoscopy is done for various reasons like monitor and treat conditions that affect the bladder and urethra and to diagnose. Other common reasons to perform cystoscopy are:-
To investigate causes and symptoms of bladder signs- Cystoscopy helps your doctor to know the symptoms and causes like frequent urinary tract infections, overactive bladder, incontinence, blood in the urine, and painful urination.
Diagnosing bladder and urinary tract conditions and diseases- Cystoscopy is also used in diagnosing cancer, bladder inflammation, and bladder stones.
Treating bladder conditions and diseases- A few tools can be passed through the cystoscope to help in treating bladder condition and disease. During cystoscopy, minute bladder tumors can be removed.
To diagnose an enlarged prostate- Cystoscopy may help in revealing the narrowing of the urethra which is a passage through the prostate gland. It indicates an enlarged prostate.
Cystoscopy can be divided into two types-
Rigid cystoscope- This cystoscope is a straight and solid telescope which has been in use for a long period of time. It is used with a high intensity light source and a separate channel which gives space for other instruments to be attached to it.
Flexible cystoscope- This is a common cystoscope which is very common and is used for diagnosing bladder tumours and follow ups. It is basically a fiber optic instrument which is flexible and has a maneuverable tip, which can easily pass through the curves of the urethra.