Reasons, Preparation & Procedure To Conduct a Cystourethrogram

Submitted on March 27, 2012

A voiding cystourethrogram is an x – ray examination of the urethra and bladder captured during the emptying of the bladder. Voiding cystourethrogram’s use a special form of x-ray known as fluoroscopy. An x-ray is a non – invasive medical test that significantly helps the physician diagnose and treat most medical conditions. Any images captured will usually involve exposing certain parts of the body to a small amount of ionizing radiation in order to produce pictures of the internal structure of the body. The fluoroscopy used in rf cystourethrogram voiding allows us to capture images of the organ while it is in motion.

Reasons for Cystourethrogram

There are a number of reasons why voiding cystourethrogram, also known as micturating cystourethrogram, is performed. Some of these reasons include identifying the primary cause of repeated urinary tract infections, urinary incontinence as well as examining the bladder and urethra for any damage or structural imperfections. The condition is also used in men to find out whether urinary reflux or vesicoureteral reflux is present. This condition causes the urine produced in the kidneys and transported to the bladder via the ureter to flow back up into the kidney if the bladder has reached full capacity. This condition is known to be hereditary while it may also be a result of a blockage in the bladder or an incomplete emptying of the bladder.


Since iodine is a substance used during a micturating cystourethrogram, it is essential that you inform the doctor if you are allergic to the chemical. Other conditions such as asthma, symptoms of urinary tract infections as well as pregnancy need to be identified before hand. If you have undergone an x-ray test within the last 4 days that used barium contrast material or have taken medication that contains bismuth, inform your doctor of the same.


The procedure does not require you to be admitted into a hospital and is usually carried out in a special room. You will need to remove all of your clothes and wear only a gown. Just before the test commences, you will be asked to urinate and lie on your back on the x-ray table. The genitals will then be cleaned and draped with some sterile towels. A catheter will then be placed through the urethra and into the bladder and a contrast material will then be injected into the catheter until the bladder is full. X-rays will then be taken while the patient is in different positions. More x-rays will then be taken during urination and, if you are unable to urinate in a certain position, you will be asked to do so in a different position. The test will usually take about 30 to 45 minutes to complete.