Bladder Inflammation with Polyps in Dogs

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Polypoid Cystitis in Dogs

Polypoid cystitis is a condition marked by a chronically inflamed and/or infected urinary bladder. This disease is characterized by polypoid (round and fleshy) protrusions scattered over the surface of the bladder. These protrusions can lead to ulcers in the lining of the urinary bladder, which will result in occasional blood in the urine.

Symptoms and Types

  • Bloody urine
  • Frequent urination
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Urethral obstruction from polyps (pet stops urinating and becomes very ill)
  • Lack of appetite – not eating or drinking
  • Recurrent urinary tract infections



Dogs suffering from chronic urinary tract infections, or urinary bladder stones, are most at risk for developing polypoid cystitis.


Your veterinarian will perform a complete physical exam, including a blood chemical profile, a complete blood count, a urinalysis and an electrolyte panel. You will need to give a thorough history of your pet's health leading up to the onset of symptoms.

Cystoscopy (going into the bladder with a small camera), or cystotomy (surgery to open the bladder) is essential for obtaining a diagnosis of polypoid cystitis. Cystotomy or cystoscopy will show bloody, polypoid lesions over the bladder surface that cannot be visually differentiated from transitional cell carcinoma (TCC), a grave cancer of the bladder. A biopsy (tissue removal for examination) of the polyps will need to be performed for differentiation, and will be obtained during the cystoscopic procedure.

A sample of urine from the bladder will also need to be cultured, and will be removed by sterile catheterization, or at the time of cystoscopy. Another procedure that can be used to draw urine out of the bladder is cystocentesis, which uses a needle to perform the task, but it will not be used unless TCC has been ruled out.

Double-contrast cystography, and positive contrast cystography (both methods use injection of a dye that shows up on x-ray examination), are the best methods for visually examining the interior of the bladder. This method may reveal irregular polyploid masses in the bladder, and/or a thickened bladder wall. Ultrasound imaging can also be used for this purpose, and may show polypoid/mass-like lesions along the lining of the bladder.

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