What you can expectBy Mayo Clinic staff
Collecting a urine sample for testing
A urine cytology test requires a urine sample. Most often this is obtained by urinating into a sterile container. In some cases, a urine sample is collected using a thin, hollow tube (catheter) that's inserted into your urethra and moved up to your bladder.
Your doctor may ask you to provide additional urine samples on subsequent days. Testing multiple urine samples that have been collected over several days may increase the accuracy of urine cytology testing.
Examining the urine sample in the laboratory
Your urine sample is sent to a laboratory for testing by a doctor who specializes in examining body tissues (pathologist). The pathologist analyzes any cells seen in the urine sample under a microscope. The pathologist notes the types of cells and looks for signs in the cells that might indicate cancer.
- Renshaw AA. Urine and bladder washings. In: Cibas ES, et al. Cytology: Diagnostic Principles and Clinical Correlates. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2009:105.
- De Las Casas LE, et al. Diagnostic value of urine cytology examination. In: Bardales RH. Practical Urological Cytopathology. New York, N.Y.: Oxford University Press; 2002:234.