Urology is the surgical specialty that essentially focuses on the disorders or diseases associated with the urinary tracts of males and females, and the male reproductive system. Medical professionals who specialise in this field are called Urologists and are trained to effectively diagnose, treat, and manage patients suffering from related disorders. The various organs covered by urology include – kidneys, ureters, urinary bladder, urethra, and male reproductive organs namely – the, epididymis, vas deferens, seminal vesicles, prostate and penis.
Urology involves the management of problems such as urinary tract stones, infections and benign prostatic enlargement, as well as complicated surgical problems such as the surgical management of different types of cancers and correction of congenital defects. Moreover, it is closely related to other medical fields including Oncology, Nephrology, Gynaecology, Gastroenterology, and Endocrinology. It is a discipline that combines the study of different organs and physiological systems, comprising different sub-fields.
You may consult a urologist if you face issues such as:
Factors that could increase the potential risk of developing kidney stones include:
The treatment of kidney stones depends on its size, location and composition. Keeping your body hydrated and taking certain medicines can help a small stone pass easily. However, for large problematic stones, there are certain other treatment options such as:
Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy or ESWL is a process that uses shock (sound) waves to break or disintegrate a large kidney stone into tiny fragments so that it can easily pass out of the body through the urine. It has a success rate of 70% and isn’t used as commonly now as opposed to the past due to the need for repeat procedures for complete stone clearance. It is typically preferred in paediatric age-groups and for small soft stones.
Ureteroscopic Stone Removal (URS) uses a small telescope with a laser to disintegrate stones stuck in the ureters. With a success rate of over 95%, it is the preferred modality of management of ureteric stones obstructing the flow of urine.
Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy (PCNL, PNL) is an endoscopic surgical procedure that is used to remove large stones (>2cm) from the kidneys, with a success rate of >95%. Nowadays, we use smaller sized instruments to gain access to kidney stones using Miniperc and Microperc techniques.
Retrograde IntraRenal Surgery (RIRS) uses a flexible endoscope to enter the kidney through the urethra to crush stones or ablate tumours using a laser. Its success rate is >95% and is a lesser invasive technique to remove multiple renal stones, especially if lesser than 1.5cm.
Blood in urine, also known as Hematuria, is in fact a symptom and not a particular condition. Cases of hematuria should be precisely evaluated by the doctor to determine or rule out an underlying cause. Blood in urine can usually come from the kidneys, ureters, bladder or urethra
Some of the possible causes of blood in urine include:
Dysuria refers to pain, discomfort, or burning sensation when urinating. This symptom is more common in women than in men. However, it is commoner in older men than the young ones.
Some of the common causes of painful urination are:
Some of the things you can do to reduce urinary frequency are:
The most common procedures performed by urologists in an office include:
Common procedures performed in an operation room setting include: