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Bladder Fulguration

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Feb 6, 2023.

What is bladder fulguration?

Bladder fulguration is a procedure to destroy abnormal growths or tissue. The procedure may be used to treat problems such as cystitis or some forms of cancer. Your healthcare provider will use a laser or electrocautery device to create energy. The energy makes heat that destroys tissue.

Kidney, Ureters, Bladder

How do I prepare for the procedure?

  • Your healthcare provider will tell you how to prepare. He or she may tell you not to eat or drink anything the night before the procedure. Arrange to have someone drive you home from the procedure.
  • Tell your provider about all medicines you currently take. He or she will tell you if you need to stop any medicine for the procedure, and when to stop. He or she will tell you which medicines to take or not take on the day of your procedure.
  • You may need to have an ultrasound or urine tests. Your provider will tell you when to have these tests before your procedure.

What will happen during the procedure?

  • You may be given general anesthesia to keep you asleep and pain free during your procedure. Your healthcare provider may instead put local anesthesia into your urethra and bladder. With local anesthesia, you will not feel pain, but you may be able to feel some pressure during your procedure. You may also feel burning or a need to urinate during the procedure.
  • A cystoscope will be placed through your urethra and into your bladder. A cystoscope is a small tube with a light and magnifying camera on the end. Your healthcare provider will look at the walls of your urethra as the scope goes through to your bladder. Your bladder will be filled with liquid so your provider can see the inside of your bladder more clearly.
  • Tools may be inserted through the cystoscope to treat any problems in your urethra or bladder. Your provider may also take a sample of tissue and send it to a lab for tests. A laser or other device will be used to destroy tissue. New, healthy tissue may grow back in the same place.

What should I expect after the procedure?

  • You will be taken to a recovery room until you are fully awake. Do not get out of bed until healthcare providers say it is okay. When providers see that you are okay, you will be taken back to your hospital room.
  • You will be helped to walk around after the procedure. Movement helps prevent blood clots.
  • Your healthcare provider will check to make sure you can urinate on your own. You may see small amounts of blood in your urine. This is normal. It is also normal to have an increased need to urinate. You may also have burning or mild discomfort in your bladder or kidney area when you urinate.
  • Medicines may be given to prevent or treat pain or nausea. Blood thinning medicine may be given to help prevent blood clots. Medicine will also be given to prevent a burning feeling when you urinate. The medicine will make your urine turn orange or blue. This is normal.

What are the risks of bladder fulguration?

You may bleed more than expected or develop an infection. Your urethra, bladder, or ureters may get damaged during your procedure. Swelling caused by the cystoscopy may cause a blockage or slow urine flow. These problems may make it hard to control your urine.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

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