Urinary Incontinence

 

Urinary Incontinence or Ureteroscopy

Ureteroscopy is the examination of the ureters, the tubes connecting your kidney to your bladder, using a tiny tube that allows your doctor to see the lining of the ureter and perform several diagnostic and therapeutic procedures.

 

Minimally invasive

Ureteroscopes, and endoscopes in general, offer great potential for minimally invasive diagnosis and therapy for a variety of conditions. This is because different types of instruments can be passed through the ureteroscope.

Examples of instruments that can be placed through a ureteroscope include baskets to remove kidney stones, biopsy and grasping forceps to get tissue that can be examined under a microscope, laser fibers to fragment a kidney stone, and ureteral stents to make sure urine can flow without being blocked between your kidneys and bladder. The picture above shows an example of a ureteroscope.

What is a ureteroscope?

A ureteroscope is a type of endoscope, which is a tiny tube that allows doctors to look inside your organs and tissue without cutting any holes, in this case specifically used to examine the ureter.

There are two main classes of ureteroscopes: semirigid and flexible. Your urologist will use one of these classes depending on where inside your ureter they need to look.

More Information

Ureteroscopy | Why

Reasons for use

  • Blood in your urine, also called hematuria
  • Abnormal cells found on analysis of your urine sample
  • Frequent urinary tract infections
  • Presence of a stone
  • Abnormal growth, such as a polyp or tumor
  • Urinary blockage for reason other than one listed here

Results

What can I expect after the test?

You may have a mild burning feeling when you urinate, and you may see small amounts of blood in your urine. These problems should not last more than 24 hours. Tell your doctor if bleeding or pain is severe or if problems last more than a couple of days.

To relieve discomfort, drink two 8-ounce glasses of water each hour for 2 hours. Ask your doctor if you can take a warm bath to relieve the burning feeling. If not, you may be able to hold a warm, damp washcloth over the urethral opening.

Your doctor may give you an antibiotic to take for 1 or 2 days to prevent an infection. If you have signs of infection–including pain, chills, or fever–call your doctor.

This image shows an example of what a ureteroscopy may look like if a kidney stone is present in the ureter. The stone can be clearly viewed, and instruments can be inserted through the scope to treat the kidney stone.

Ureteroscopy | Treatment

Ureteroscopy is usually done under general anesthesia, which means that you are not awake for any of the procedure. Before undergoing general anesthesia, like with any other procedure, you will undergo some form of pre-screening to make sure you are fit to undergo anesthesia.

On the day of the procedure, you will be asked to not eat or drink for some time before the procedure. Depending on the specific reason for your ureteroscopy, you may have a stent or catheter in place after the procedure. You will usually be able to go home on the same day that you have the procedure.

More Information

Ureteroscopy | Why

Reasons for use

  • Blood in your urine, also called hematuria
  • Abnormal cells found on analysis of your urine sample
  • Frequent urinary tract infections
  • Presence of a stone
  • Abnormal growth, such as a polyp or tumor
  • Urinary blockage for reason other than one listed here

Results

What can I expect after the test?

You may have a mild burning feeling when you urinate, and you may see small amounts of blood in your urine. These problems should not last more than 24 hours. Tell your doctor if bleeding or pain is severe or if problems last more than a couple of days.

To relieve discomfort, drink two 8-ounce glasses of water each hour for 2 hours. Ask your doctor if you can take a warm bath to relieve the burning feeling. If not, you may be able to hold a warm, damp washcloth over the urethral opening.

Your doctor may give you an antibiotic to take for 1 or 2 days to prevent an infection. If you have signs of infection–including pain, chills, or fever–call your doctor.

This image shows an example of what a ureteroscopy may look like if a kidney stone is present in the ureter. The stone can be clearly viewed, and instruments can be inserted through the scope to treat the kidney stone.

Ureteroscopy | Treatment

Ureteroscopy is usually done under general anesthesia, which means that you are not awake for any of the procedure. Before undergoing general anesthesia, like with any other procedure, you will undergo some form of pre-screening to make sure you are fit to undergo anesthesia.

On the day of the procedure, you will be asked to not eat or drink for some time before the procedure. Depending on the specific reason for your ureteroscopy, you may have a stent or catheter in place after the procedure. You will usually be able to go home on the same day that you have the procedure.