Cystoscopy is a procedure that lets the healthcare provider view the urinary tract, particularly the bladder, the urethra, and the openings to the ureters. Cystoscopy can help find problems with the urinary tract. This may include early signs of cancer, infection, narrowing, blockage, or bleeding.
To do this procedure, a long, flexible, lighted tube, called a cystoscope, is put into the urethra and moved up into the bladder. Here, the healthcare provider can look closely at the inside of the urethra and bladder. He or she can also wash the bladder, and access the structures with special instruments used through the scope.
During a cystoscopy, the healthcare provider may remove tissue for further exam (called a biopsy). Some problems can be treated during the procedure.