How Much Does A Cystoscopy Cost?

Last Updated on April 11, 2023
Written by CPA Alec Pow | Content Reviewed by Certified CFA CFA Alexander Popinker

Cystoscopy is a procedure that allows a urologist to examine the lining of the bladder and the canal that carries urine outside the body, the urethra. A tubular-shaped device, the cystoscope, equipped with a video camera is inserted into the urethra and gradually advances toward the bladder.

Cystoscopy can be performed in the office without the need for hospitalization, using an anesthetic gel to numb the urethra or it can be performed with sedation. Another option is to perform a cystoscopy in the hospital under general anesthesia. The type of cystoscopy you will have performed depends on the reason for the recommended procedure.

How much does a cystoscopy cost?

The price of a cystoscopy ranges between $350 and $3,000 or more. These high differences in cost are linked to the place where the procedure takes place whether it’s done in-office, hospital, or an ambulatory surgery center, but also whether the patient has medical insurance or not. So, the national average cost for an in-office cystoscopy is $732, while the national average cost of a cystoscopy done in a hospital is $2,440.

NTTC Surgery Center from North Texas has a fixed cost for a cystoscopy procedure which is $3,250. The price is for those who don’t have insurance, but if you have one you should consult your provider to see the coverage. The final cost includes all the fees, for the facility and surgeon, but also for anesthesia.

The average price with commercial insurance plans for a cystoscopy, in New York, is around $600 just for the procedure. If the procedure is done under general anesthesia, it will cost another $1,150 more or less, while a cystoscopy in the hospital will cost around $2,300.

Additional costs

After the procedure the doctor may recommend some pain medications that are not included in the final price, and usually they cost around $5.

In order to prevent infection, the doctor will prescribe antibiotics, costing around $10.

You might also like our articles about the cost of a video capsule endoscopy, a colonoscopy, or a mammogram.

If urethroscopy is done or tissue samples are taken, these will add an extra cost, separated from the bill of the cystoscopy.

Does insurance cover the cost of the cystoscopy procedure?

The cost of a cystoscopy procedure is covered by most health insurance plans. The coverage can be from 90% to 50%, depending on the patient’s insurance coverage. So, in this case, you get to pay the visit to the doctor and 10% to 50% of the cost of the procedure.

How to pay less without insurance

Most of the clinics offer credit options and financing options for cystoscopy procedures, and you can choose which fits your budget.

Also, there are some clinics like the Clinic at Brackenridge in Austin, TX, and the NYC Free Clinic, which offer people access to all types of specialty care, including urology, for free or low costs.

What should the cystoscopy procedure include?

Sedation or anesthesia will be needed or not. If you get a sedative, you will be sleepy and relaxed during your cystoscopy, but you will be conscious. If you receive a general anesthetic, you will not be conscious during the procedure. Both types of medication can be administered intravenously in the hand.

Cytoscopy Procedure ConsultationThe doctor will introduce the cystoscope. A numbing gel will be applied to the urethra to prevent pain from entering the cystoscope. After waiting for a few minutes for the area to numb, the doctor will carefully insert the cystoscope into the urethra, using the thinnest possible. Larger cystoscopes may be required for tissue collection or insertion of surgical instruments into the bladder.

Your doctor will examine your urethra and bladder. The cystoscope has a lens at the top that functions as a telescope through which it visually increases the internal surface of the urethra and bladder. The doctor may attach a special camera over the lenses to project the images onto a screen.

The doctor will fill the bladder with a sterile solution. The liquid will relax the walls, which allows the doctor to better visualize. As your bladder fills, you may feel the need to urinate. You will be encouraged to do so after the procedure is completed.

Tissue samples are taken. Your doctor may take tissue samples to send them to the laboratory or perform other procedures during the cystoscopy. If the cystoscopy is done in order to remove a calculation from the bladder, the doctor initially crushes the calculation with the help of a laser or ultrasound transmitter and then extracts the fragments.

Why is cystoscopy performed?

Cystoscopy is performed to diagnose, monitor and treat conditions that affect the bladder and urethra. Your doctor may recommend cystoscopy to:

  • Investigate the causes of signs and symptoms. These can be blood in the urine (hematuria), urinary incontinence, overactive bladder, and pain when urinating. Cystoscopy can also determine the cause of frequent urinary tract infections. Cystoscopy is not performed if you have an active urinary tract infection.
  • Diagnose bladder conditions, for example, bladder cancer, urinary stones (kidney stones), and bladder inflammation (cystitis).
  • Treat bladder conditions. Special instruments are passed through a cystoscope to treat certain conditions. For example, very small tumors in the bladder can be removed during cystoscopy.
  • Diagnosis of enlarged prostate. Cystoscopy may show narrowing of the urethra in the prostate area, highlighting the enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia).

Your doctor may perform a second procedure, called a urethroscopy, at the same time as a cystoscopy. During urethroscopy, the doctor uses a small probe to examine the channels that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder (ureters).

Final words

Your doctor may talk to you immediately after the cystoscopy procedure. Or, the doctor might wait. Usually, the effectiveness of the procedure can be seen in a few days. If the cystoscopy involved taking a tissue sample to be examined to determine if it was bladder cancer (biopsy), the sample will be sent to the laboratory for analysis. When the investigations are completed, the doctor will notify you of the results.

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