Bladder Studies

Tests of Urine

  • Urine Analysis: A screening test of the urine showing overall health as well as health of the urinary tract specifically. Analysis includes pH, presence of ketones, sugar, blood, and bacteria. A positive result in any of the testing requires further assessment, requires a prescription, and is competed in lab draw site.
  • Urine Culture and Sensitivity (C & S): A test that determines the amount and type of bacteria in the urine. Urine is collected, placed in a petri dish within the lab, and monitored for bacterial growth for 48 hours. If sufficient numbers of bacteria grow, signifying an infection, the bacteria is then tested against several antibiotics to determine which medication would be most effective in treating the infection.
  • Urine Cytology: A method that examines urine to determine if bladder cancer cells are present. The urine is examined for abnormal cells, which may detect for bladder cancer. Patients with MS at higher risk for bladder cancer are ones who have received cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan) or have indwelling catheters (urethral or suprapubic) or are smokers.

Blood Tests

  • Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN), Creatinine: Blood tests, which provide information as to how well the kidneys are functioning.
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR): Test used to examine how well the kidneys are functioning by estimating the rate that blood passes through the glomeruli of the kidneys each minute. This bloodwork may be required before an MRI to make sure the kidneys are functioning properly, especially if you are age sixty or older or have a history of hypertension or diabetes.

Other Tests of Bladder and Kidneys

  • Bladder Ultrasound: Images the bladder to assess the amount of urine in the bladder after voiding. This test can be completed in our office.
  • Urodynamics: This is a combination of tests that measure bladder function and pressure and is the best test currently available for diagnosing problems with nerve damage to the bladder caused by MS and other like diseases. The cystometrogram (CMG) measures bladder pressure and volume, and the electromyogram (EMG) measures bladder activity. This test may also include a video component which will provide images of the bladder. These images are recorded and analyzed to determine the location and structure of the bladder.
  • Computerized Tomography (CT): Uses computers to produce detailed views of the kidneys, ureters, or bladder to assess size and structure of the tissue, kidney stone, or tumor.
  • Kidney and Pelvic Ultrasounds: Identifies location of the kidneys, differences between the kidneys, and blockages or stones within the kidney or bladder.
  • Cytoscopy: An examination of the bladder by using a small catheter (cytoscope) with light and magnification in the bladder. This allows for the physician to directly observe the urethra and bladder for inflammation, stones, tumors, or structural damage.
  • Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP): Specialized x-ray of the kidneys, bladder, and ureters to evaluate for bladder and kidney infections, blood in the urine, injury, or tumors. Dye is injected into a vein and a series of x-ray images will show how the kidneys remove the dye.
  • Urinary Catheterization: A tube is inserted into the bladder through the urethra allowing urine to drain. May need to be completed for collection of a sterile specimen.
  • Pelvic Exam: This test is for females only to examine the vagina, cervix, and uterus. The exam evaluates the strength of the pelvic floor muscles and locations of the bladder and other pelvic organs.  May be completed by a health care specialist during a urologic workup or pelvic floor physical therapy.