Cystocentesis in Cats

Collecting urine can be tricky in cats, especially if the urine needs to collected without contamination. Urine collected by voiding is usually contaminated with bacteria. Cystocentesis is the procedure in which an uncontaminated urine specimen is removed from the urinary bladder using a needle.

Cystocentesis is indicated any time urine needs to be evaluated by urinalysis or culture and sensitivity. The results can give an idea of hydration and kidney function as well as indicate inflammation or infections of the urinary tract.

There are no real contraindications to performing this test in an cat with suspected urinary tract disease. Even normal results can help determine health.

What Does a Cystocentesis Reveal in Cats?

A cystocentesis reveals abnormalities within the urinary tract as well as other abnormalities. In order to evaluate the urine, a urinalysis, cytology and/or culture and sensitivity may be needed.

How Is a Cystocentesis Done in Cats?

In order to perform a cystocentesis, your veterinarian will either select a relatively hairless area or shave a small area of hair from the abdomen over the urinary bladder. The skin is disinfected and a needle is inserted into the bladder. Urine is collected with special tubing or syringe. Analysis of the urine may be done by your veterinarian or submitted to an outside laboratory. Test results may not be available for up to 3 to 5 days, but sometimes results may be available within a couple of hours. The length of time will depend on which tests are necessary.

Is a Cystocentesis Painful to Cats?

Any pain involved is associated with the collection of urine. A needle is used to pierce the skin and enter the urinary bladder. As with people, the pain experienced from a needle will vary from individual to individual.

Is Sedation or Anesthesia Needed for a Cystocentesis?

Neither sedation nor anesthesia is needed in most patients; however, some cats resent needle sticks and may need tranquilization or ultrashort anesthesia.