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Are you awake during a cystoscopy?

When undergoing a cystoscopy, do you receive any anesthesia? Does the anesthesia numb the area or are you put to sleep?


Community Answers
  • Sue530
    3 weeks ago

    I have been awake for all 5 of mine and only experienced a lot of pain for 1. That one is done yearly because my cancer was close to the tube ( forgot the name) that goes to the kidney and they have to fill the kidney and X-ray to make sure it did not spread. Just breath and do what they tell you. It doesn’t last long. Went to appointment alone and drove home immediately after. Minimal discomfort during procedure.
    So far only had 1 Turbet surgery (asleep for that) and pray it does not come back. Good luck to all.

  • Sarah Wallin moderator
    3 weeks ago

    @sue530, I’m glad to hear the majority of your cystoscopies have resulted in minimal discomfort. We recommend that people work with their medical team to make these procedures go as smooth as possible. Thanks for sharing and good luck to you! -Sarah (BladderCancer.net Team Member)

  • lori
    3 weeks ago

    I have been awake for all 3 of mine. I was diagnosed last August and have had 3 cystoscopys followed by 3 TURBT surgeries.
    All tumors have been low grade and removed. During the cystoscopys they apply a topical numbing ointment then I’m invited to watch the show on the screen as the doctor explores my bladder. I would describe it as uncomfortable not really painful. Scheduled for my next 3 month scope in November. Prayers up for all.

  • Sarah Wallin moderator
    3 weeks ago

    @lori Your description helps others know what to expect. Keep us updated as your scope in November approaches. Fingers crossed for you! -Sarah (BladderCancer.net Team Member)

  • lori
    2 weeks ago

    Thank you!

  • hi8us60
    4 weeks ago

    I was fully awake when I had my Cystoscopy. I won’t lie, it was extremely painful to the point I had tears in my eyes. It felt like it took forever for the procedure but I think it took less than 10 minutes. I dread going in for my next one.

  • Sarah Wallin moderator
    3 weeks ago

    @hi8us60, I can see how the pain would make you dread it. Sorry that you had to experience that. Have you told your medical team that it was painful? I wonder if there’s anything they can do to help make the next one go smoother. -Sarah (BladderCancer.net Team Member)

  • Curtis Garbett moderator
    2 years ago

    I am always put to sleep during my cystoscopies and do not feel anything.

  • Paul Hebert moderator
    2 years ago

    Male. I had two cystoscopies. Both while I was fully awake. Neither were painful or uncomfortable.

    I won’t lie, I thought I would freak out when I saw the equipment and knew where they were planning on putting that equipment. Men are a bit funny about putting things, well, you know where.

    But the process is painless and easy. In my case, they simply squeezed some anesthetic gel into the urethra with a small syringe (relax – not with a needle – but a small plastic nozzle.) They gently clamped off the penis and waited as the gel liquifies and settles down the length of the urethra, effectively numbing it completely. Then they insert the cystoscope in the urethra and push it up into the bladder. You can feel a bit of pressure (again – not uncomfortable or painful in the least).

    That’s it.

    No fuss.

    Some muss – as urine will seep out along with some of the anesthetic gel.

    When you’re done you just walk out.

    While it’s not something I’d pay to have done regularly, it wasn’t anything to shy away from.

  • Noel Forrest moderator
    2 years ago

    You are generally awake for this procedure. You will receive a local anesthesia that numbs the urethra, which is the passage used for the tube to pass through into the bladder. The procedure is very quick and relatively pain free.

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