Fluoroscopy - Cystogram

What is a Cystogram?

A cystogram is the fluoroscopic evaluation of the bladder after it has been filled with a dye-like contrast material.

What are some common uses of the procedure?

Cystograms are performed to identify any abnormalities within the bladder.  Most patients who undergo this procedure are post-operative patients who have a catheter already in place.  This procedure allows the physician to ensure that the bladder is completely healed prior to catheter removal.

How should I prepare for the procedure?

No special preparation is necessary before a cystogram.  Food and fluid intake do not need to be restricted.

Before the procedure begins, you will be asked to change into a gown, so that no metal objects will show up on the images.

Women should always inform their physician or technologist if there is any possibility that they may be pregnant.

What does the equipment look like?

You will be positioned on an exam table.  Above you will be a box-like structure containing the x-ray tube and fluoroscopic equipment.  Underneath the examination table is a special drawer that holds a film cassette for development of still images.

How does the procedure work?

The radiologist monitors the bladder as it is filled with contrast by using a fluoroscope, a device that projects radiographic images in real time onto a screen in the exam room.

How is the procedure performed?

An x-ray of your abdomen will be taken prior to starting your exam.  Next, a foley catheter is inserted into the bladder, unless a catheter is already in place.  Then, a contrast material is used to fill the bladder.  Images are taken of the bladder as it fills and again when it is complete full.  The contrast material is drained from the bladder, and one last image is taken.

The exam is usually completed within 20-30 minutes.

Who will interpret the results and how do I get them?

A radiologist will interpret the images, and a signed report will be sent to your physician who will discuss the results with you.