Frequently Asked Questions


What is Urodynamics?

  • Urodynamics or, Bladder Function Test, is done by inserting a PVes (vesical pressure) catheter into the bladder through the urethra, and a PAbd (abdominal pressure) catheter into the rectum. The study can be performed with the patient standing or sitting. In select cases the study may be performed with the patient lying down. During the test, your bladder will be filled with sterile water through the bladder catheter. The purpose of this procedure is to find out how the bladder acts when it fills and empties. A computer will record all of the measurements and a “tracing” will be generated. This test is performed by a Registered Nurse as per Doctor’s orders. The procedure and review takes approximately 60 – 90 minutes.

What is cystoscopy?

  • A cystoscopy is done by passing a lighted telescope through the urethra and into the bladder. The purpose of this procedure is to look at the interior of your bladder and urethra. It is performed by the urologist under local anesthetic with a Registered Nurse present. The procedure and review take approximately 50 minutes.


What is Urinary flow rate, or “Uroflow” (UF)?

This uses a special toilet connected to a computer to record the amount, pattern and rate of urine flow.


How should I prepare for my test?

  • Please do not consume any caffeine the day of your test.
  • If you take bladder medications that help control your urgency, frequency, and over active bladder please notify your doctor prior to the tests.
  • Please check with your doctor if you are taking blood thinners, or antibiotics.
  • Drink enough water so that you arrive at your appointment with a full bladder.
  • If you have a Foley catheter, there is no need to drink more water than normal.


What should I bring to my appointment?

  • Care card, medical history, and list of your medications


I am pregnant or may be pregnant. Can I still do the test?

  • No, you cannot have a cystoscopy or urodynamics done while you are pregnant.


I may have a bladder infection, what should I do?

  • If you suspect you have a bladder infection, please call the clinic 24-28 hours prior to your test. As your test may need to be postponed.
  • If you chronically have a bladder infection (you get a bladder infection over 3 times in one year/ or 2 infections within 6 months), you need to call your doctor to check if it is safe to do the test.


Can I take my regular medication?

  • Depends. You need to ask your doctor 5-7 days prior to your tests if you should continue with your regular medication.
  • Lastly, please let the doctors and nurses know if you need to take blood thinners. You may or may not be allowed to take medication that thins out your blood prior to your test/ procedure.


Would it be painful?

  • Most patients indicate there’s some mild discomfort during the procedures. But it varies between patients. If you have a low pain tolerance, please let your doctor’s know.


Do I need to bring a caregiver if I require help transferring or need to use mobility aids?

  • You need to bring a caregiver who will help you transfer to a stretcher on the day of your tests. If you fail to bring a caregiver/ helper, your test will be cancelled and rebooked.


Can I eat?

  • Yes, we encourage you to eat prior to your test


Can I have coffee or tea?

  • No, please do not drink any fluids with caffeine. It will affect the results of your test. Caffeinated drinks irritate the bladder.


Can I go to work after?

  • Yes, many patients will choose to go to work post procedure.


Can I drive after?

  • Yes, most patients are able to drive after their tests.


How long does the procedure take? How long is the wait time?

  • 2-3 hours. During peak hours, occasionally the doctor may run late; there may be 1-2 hour wait time. Please put enough money in your parking.


Where do I park? How long do I pay for parking?

  • Please park at the health sciences parkade behind the hospital. Please put at least 2-3 hours in the meter. Please put enough money in your parking.


Do I get to see my doctor after?

  • Depends on the doctor. Some doctors want to see you at their main office to discuss your test. Please ask the nurses after your test.


Can I do the test during my menses / period?

  • If you can wear a tampon, you are allowed to continue with you test. However, if you cannot wear a tampon, you will need to reschedule.


I recently had a surgery done; can I still do the test?

  • Depends, you need to have your surgeon’s permission to do these tests. Please notify your urologist you recently had surgery. Urodynamics and cystoscopy may have adverse effects on your recent surgery.


I have an indwelling catheter, should I come in with a full bladder?

  • No, if you have a Foley/ indwelling catheter inserted, there is no need to drink more water than normal.
  • However, you will need to bring a spare catheter with you on the day of your tests.


I perform self-catheterization, should I still drink water and come in with a full bladder?

  • Depends, if you’re able to urinate without a catheter, then please drink water and come in with a full bladder. If you need to use a catheter to empty your bladder constantly, then you don’t need to drink water or come in with a full bladder.


Do I need to shower prior to my tests?

  • Yes


I can’t speak English well, do I need a translator?

  • If you have a difficult time speaking or understanding English, please let the bladder care centre clerks know when they book your appointment that you require a translator. An interpreter will be booked for you, on the day of your exams.


I’m booked for BOTOX; can I take my blood thinners?

  • You must to inform your doctor / urologist multiple days prior to you test that you are taking blood thinners.


Am I allowed to urinate when I arrive at the Clinic?

  • YES, if you’re ONLY having a cystoscopy exam, you’re allowed to urinate.
  • NO, if you are booked for both urodynamics and cystoscopy exams, you need to try and hold your urine for your urodynamics test.


What is the purpose of Pabd (the catheter in rectum)? 

  • Placement of the catheter in the rectum enhances the accuracy of the bladder measurements. The rectal tube detects movement from the muscles outside of the bladder. The doctors and nurses can then see if your muscles are moving or tightening while voiding.


 What is the purpose of Pves (the catheter in urethra)? 

  • The bladder tube detects movement from the muscles inside of the bladder. The doctors and nurses can then see if your bladder muscles are moving or tightening while voiding.


Do I need to take antibiotic after the procedure?

  • Depends on your doctor. You will need to ask them post procedure if you need to take antibiotics post procedures.


How long does it take for the referring physician to receive the test result?

  • Depends on your doctor. Some physician’s offices will contact you within 2 weeks after your test. However, some make take longer. If you haven’t received a phone call from your physician’s main office after 4 weeks, please give them a call.


I have surgical hardware inside me; can I still have the test done? (Heart valve implant, artificial joints, orthopedic implants etc.)

  • You will need to notify you surgeon (cardiologist, orthopaedic surgeon etc.). Your surgeon may not want you to have a urodynamics or cystoscopy done within a certain period of time post-surgery. Please notify the bladder care centre staff if your surgeon wants you to have your bladder tests done.