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Services - Uroflowmetry

What is Uroflowmetry?

Uroflowmetry is a simple, diagnostic screening procedure used to calculate the flow rate of urine over time. The test is noninvasive (the skin is not pierced), and may be used to assess bladder and sphincter function.

Uroflowmetry is performed by having a person urinate into a special funnel that is connected to a measuring instrument. The measuring instrument calculates the amount of urine, rate of flow in seconds, and length of time until completion of the void. This information is converted into a graph and interpreted by a physician. The information helps evaluate function of the lower urinary tract or help determine if there is an obstruction of normal urine outflow.

During normal urination, the initial urine stream starts slowly but almost immediately speeds up until the bladder is nearly empty. The urine flow then slows again until the bladder is empty. In persons with a urinary tract obstruction, this pattern of flow is altered, and increases and decreases more gradually. The uroflowmeter graphs this information, taking into account the person’s gender and age. Depending on the results of the procedure, other tests may be recommended by your doctor.

Other related procedures that may be used to diagnose urinary outflow obstruction or lower urinary tract dysfunction include cystometry, cystography, retrograde cystography, and cystoscopy. Please see these procedures for additional information.

How does the urinary system work?

The body takes nutrients from food and converts them to energy. After the body has taken the food components that it needs, waste products are left behind in the bowel and in the blood.

The urinary system helps the body to eliminate liquid waste called urea and keeps the chemicals, such as potassium and sodium, and water in balance. Urea is produced when foods containing protein, such as meat, poultry, and certain vegetables, are broken down in the body. Urea is carried in the bloodstream to the kidneys, where it is removed along with waer and other wastes in the form of urine.