Cystoscopy is not painful, but it can be uncomfortable when a cystoscope, a thin tube with a camera and light in its tip, is inserted through the urethra, says NHS Choices. To ease discomfort, local anesthesia is given for flexible cystoscopy, and general or epidural anesthesia is for rigid cystoscopy.
According to Healthline, cystoscopy is ordered by a doctor to evaluate symptoms like blood in the urine, painful urination, pelvic pain, overactive bladder, and/or frequent occurrence of urinary tract infection. The procedure can reveal the possible causes of the urinary problem, such as tumors, malignant growths and stones. It can also help confirm suspicions of blockages, problems with ureters and enlarged prostrates in males.
If an epidural anesthetic is used, there may be some discomfort when the anesthesiologist inserts a needle into the back, notes NHS Choices. General anesthesia is administered via an IV in the arm, so there may be some slight discomfort while the IV is inserted.
Following a cystoscopy, it is not unusual to experience a burning sensation while urinating, reports Mayo Clinic. Some people also have some bleeding from the urethra following this procedure. Drinking plenty of water, taking warm baths and applying a warm washcloth to the urethral opening can relieve discomfort.