Cystoscopy usually involves a flexible instrument known as a cystoscope (a thin tube with a camera and light at the end) to examine the inside of the bladder and takes about five minutes. This is usually performed in an outpatient setting and results are made available at the same time. A cystoscopy is used for diagnostic purposes only.
During a flexible cystoscopy, a local anaesthetic gel is applied to the urethra in order to minimise any pain and this acts as a lubricant as well to allow the free passage of the camera.
Risks of cystoscopy are infection, bleeding and pain but these risks are minimal.