Definition of a cystoscopy

Cystoscopy is a procedure in which a doctor inserts a thin, flexible tube with a lens and a light on the end into the bladder (through the urethra, the tube through which urine leaves the body). A cystoscopy allows the doctor to check the bladder for abnormalities (unusual anatomy or signs of disease).


When can my child eat?
Your child may resume a normal diet after discharge from the hospital.

What should I do about nausea and vomiting?
Below are tips if your child has trouble with nausea and vomiting:

  • Let your child’s stomach rest for 30 minutes. Then, return to clear liquids. Clear liquids include Sprite®, apple juice or water.
  • When your child can keep clear liquids down, slowly work up to a normal diet.
  • Have your child lay down or sit quietly

If the vomiting is persistent or continues, call your child’s care team for next steps.

What should I do about nausea and vomiting?

Dehydration can occur. Signs and symptoms of dehydration include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Lack of tears
  • Not urinating for 6-8 hours or small amount of dark colored urine. Your child should have 6-8 wet diapers per day

If your child has these symptoms call your doctor or bring your child to the closest emergency room.


How can I tell if my child is in pain?
Some children can tell you about their pain. For all children, it is important to offer comfort and listen to their concerns.

Other ways children communicate they are in pain include:

  • Moaning
  • Whimpering
  • Making faces of pain
  • Crying
  • Irritability
  • Being inactive
  • Having no appetite
  • Not sleeping

How can I help with my child’s pain?
It is normal for your child to feel a stinging feeling during urination. This should improve over time. It helps to have your child drink plenty of fluids to help dilute (water down) the urine. This will help with stinging.

It is also normal to see some blood in the urine. The color should become lighter pink with each urination.

What medicines does my child need?
Acetaminophen alternating with Ibuprofen should be given every 4 hours for the first 24 hours after surgery. These are over the counter medications. Sometimes your doctor will want you to give ibuprofen every 8 hours. Please ask your child’s nurse. Your child does not need to be awakened to keep the dosing schedule.

In addition to over-the-counter medications, your child’s care team may prescribe a stronger medication may be prescribed as needed. If these medications do not help, call your child’s care team and ask to speak to the nurse.

If you call outside of normal business hours, call MGfC at 617-726-2000 and ask the operator to page the pediatric urology resident on call.


When should I give pain medicine?
When your child feels uncomfortable and they are due for medications, you can give pain medications.

Bandage/wound care

No bandage/wound care necessary.


There are no restrictions for bathing or showering. If your child is having trouble urinating, it may help to have them stand in a warm shower to urinate.


Below are tips on activity levels for your child:

  • Anesthesia can make your child feel groggy or sleepy. For the first the day, your child should not do any activities that require balance such as bike riding, playground equipment, scooters, etc. After this, your child can do normal activities safely and carefully.
  • If your child is using a prescription pain medication (such as Oxycodone, Lortab® or hydrocodone), they can become sleepy or dizzy. Watch your child to prevent them from falling.


What is normal behavior after surgery?
It is very normal to see behavior changes after surgery. Most changes in behavior only last a few days to 2 weeks. If they last longer than 3-4 weeks, call your child’s care team.

Some examples of changes include:

  • Regression (acting like a younger child, such as bedwetting or acting out)
  • Changes in sleeping and eating patterns, or nightmares. Being patient with your child will help reduce these changes. Comfort your child and help them feel safe. Understand that your child has been upset by surgery.

What to watch for

Below are important things to watch for after your child’s cystoscopy. Call the care team if your child has any of the following:

  • Persistent fever over 102° F (38.8° C)
  • Foul smelling urine
  • Increased blood in urine. Blood in urine is normal for the first few days. It is important to have your child drink lots of fluids to flush out the blood.
  • Frequent urination or increased pain with urination

Whom to call

Please call Pediatric Urology at 617-724-0327 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. If the office is closed, please call MGfC at 617-726-2000 and ask the operator to page the pediatric surgeon or pediatric urology resident on call.

If there is an emergency, go to the nearest emergency room.

Follow-up appointment

Please call your child’s care team at 617-724-0327 to make a follow-up appointment. Your child’s care team can help you decide when to schedule the follow-up appointment.

Special instructions

Go to the closest emergency room or call 911 if your child has any of the following signs:

  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Excessive bleeding
  • If you cannot arouse or wake up your child

A note for when you are on the way home…

Observe your child during the ride home. They may sleep but their head and neck should not fall or slump forward. This may cause their airway to become blocked or cause difficulty with breathing. Your child should be in a child safety seat with proper restraints.

Rev. 7/2020. Mass General for Children and Massachusetts General Hospital do not endorse any of the brands listed on this handout. This handout is intended to provide health information so that you can be better informed. It is not a substitute for medical advice and should not be used to treatment of any medical conditions.