If we look back at ancient medical fields, Greeks or Egyptians, doctors repeatedly check the color, texture, and odor of urine to predict urology problems. However, they also look after blood, bubbles, and other signs of disease.
Today, the modern medical field is concerned with the health of the entire urinary system. It is called urology. This blog is going to focus on what a urologist is and what you can expect from a urologist, what urologists do, and more.
What Is Urology?
It is one type of medical field that focuses on urinary diseases like urinary tract, and male reproductive tract. Some urologists only focus on the general urology problems of the urinary tract. Other specialized urologists treat such as:
- Female urology- Focuses on conditions of a woman’s urinary and reproductive tract.
- Male infertility- It concerns the problems that prevent a man from conceiving a baby with his partner
- Neurourology- a neurologist concerned on urinary problems due to conditions of the nervous system
- Pediatric urology – Focuses on children’s urinary problems.
- Urologic Oncology, focuses on the bladder, kidneys, prostate, testicles, and cancer of cancers of the urinary system.
What Is A Urologist?
In simple words, the doctor who treats the urinary disease of male, female, and children is called a Urologist. Urologists can treat everything that relates to the Urinary process and reproductive tract.
In some cases, it has been seen that urologists suggest surgery. For example, they may remove cancer cells or open up the urinary tract. Urologists can treat any part of these urinary systems. This included:
- Kidneys filter waste blood to produce urine.
- Ureters are the tubes. Through Ureters, urine flows from the kidneys to the bladder.
- The bladder(hollow sac) stores urine.
- Urethra is the tube where urine travels from the bladder out of the body.
- The adrenal glands are situated above each kidney. It releases hormones.
When To See An Urologist?
When you may understand that the time has come to see a urologist? If you have the following symptoms, we recommend that you visit the best urologist in Kolkata.
- Blood in your urine
- Urine leakage.
- A frequent or urgent need to urinate.
- Trouble urinating.
- Pain or burning during urination.
- Pain in your lower back, sides and pelvis.
- Weak Urine Flow, dribbling.
What can you expect from an urologist?
When you make an appointment with the best urologist in Kolkata, be prepared with a few question lists of urology problems that you should ask. It will help you to get the best suggestions from the doctor and make a good discussion.
On this note, you have to confess all urinary problems that you have. Plus prepared all medical history and documents. Urologists may proceed to tests for diagnosis of your physical conditions. Some of these tests are:
This process is different in order of gender. If you are male, then the doctor may do a rectal exam while, for females, you may need to have the pelvic test.
For this process, the doctor asked for blood, semen, and urine samples.
Which conditions do urologists treat?
Urologists can treat a wide range of urology problems. Go to the following part:
In men, urologists treat:
- Cancers of the bladder, penis, kidneys, testicles, and adrenal and prostate glands.
- Prostate gland enlargement.
- Erectile dysfunction.
- Kidney stones.
- Interstitial cystitis (bladder syndrome)
- Kidney diseases.
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs).
- Varicoceles, or enlarged veins in the scrotum.
In women, urologists treat:
- Bladder prolapse.
- Overactive bladder.
- Cancers of the bladder, adrenal glands and kidneys.
- Urinary incontinence.
- Kidney stones.
- Interstitial cystitis.
In children, urologists treat:
- Blockages in the urinary tract structure.
- Undescended testicles.
What Type Of Procedures Does Urologist Follow To Treat?
Urologists are medical specialists who diagnose and treat urologist problems and the male reproductive system. They employ various procedures and treatments to address these conditions. Here are some common procedures that urologists may perform:
This procedure involves using a cystoscope, a thin tube with a camera on the end, to examine the bladder and urethra. It helps diagnose and treat conditions such as bladder stones, urinary tract infections, and bladder cancer.
2. Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP)
It is a surgical procedure performed to treat an enlarged prostate gland, a condition known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The urologist removes excess prostate tissue through the urethra using a resectoscope.
3. Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy (ESWL)
This non-invasive procedure is used to treat kidney stones. High-energy shock waves are directed at the stones, which break them into smaller pieces, allowing them to pass through the urinary tract more easily.
4. Prostate Biopsy
Urologists may perform a prostate biopsy to obtain tissue samples from the prostate gland for further examination. It is typically done to diagnose or rule out prostate cancer.
This is a surgical procedure performed on males for permanent contraception. The urologist cuts and seals the vas deferens, preventing sperm from reaching the semen.
Urologists are responsible for conducting circumcisions, which is a surgical procedure involving the removal of the foreskin that covers the tip of the penis. This procedure is usually done for cultural, religious, or medical reasons.
It is the surgical removal of a kidney. Nephrectomies may be performed to treat kidney cancer, and severe kidney infections, or to remove a healthy kidney for transplantation.
8. Erectile Dysfunction Treatments
Urologists can provide various treatments for erectile dysfunction, including medications, penile implants, vacuum erection devices, and lifestyle modifications.
9. Urodynamic Testing
Urologists may conduct urodynamic tests to evaluate the function of the urinary system. These tests measure bladder pressure, urine flow, and other parameters to diagnose conditions like urinary incontinence or overactive bladder.
10. Minimally Invasive Surgeries
Urologists often use minimally invasive techniques, such as laparoscopic or robotic-assisted surgery, to perform procedures like kidney or prostate surgeries. These techniques offer smaller incisions, reduced pain, and faster recovery times compared to traditional open surgery.
Note that the specific procedures performed by a urologist may vary depending on the patient’s condition, urology problems, and the urologist’s expertise. It is best to consult with a urologist for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)
Here, we have jotted the most frequent questions about urology problems that people have asked. So, go through this part.
1. What Are Urologic Diseases?
The medical term “urologic diseases” refers to a wide range of medical conditions. All are related to urine filters and urine carried out of the body. The urologic disease can affect any age group of people. It doesn’t matter whether they are children, men, or women.
This disease can affect a particular part of the body. For females, it involves the urinary tract. And in men, they affect productive organs or the urinary tract.
2. What Is A Common Urology Problem?
Common urology problems include bladder control problems, urinary tract information, kidney stones, and prostate problems. However, some urologic problems are sustained for a short time, while others stay for a long time.
3. How Can I Keep Your Urinary System Healthy?
There are a few disciplines that you can follow to keep your urinary system healthy:
- Use the bathroom often and when needed.
- Urinate after sex.
- Be in a relaxed position while urinating.
- Follow hygiene at the toilet.
- Take time when urinating to fully empty the bladder.
- Do pelvic floor muscle exercises.
Prostate cancer can only be detected in its early stage during screening. Other than that, there is no visible symptom until the disease reaches the advanced stage.
In the early stages, the chances of treatment are high, but as the disease advances, the chances of treatment also decrease.
So, even if there are no symptoms, you must always consult with the best urologist in Kolkata after the age of 40. This would help to take enough precautionary measures in case of the onset of prostate cancer.
Let’s get to know more about the disease so that you can receive the treatment at the right time.
What is Prostate cancer?
The prostate is a male gland that is responsible for producing seminal fluid. The sole purpose of the seminal fluid is to transport and nourish the sperm. It can get affected by either benign or malignant cancer.
Prostate cancer is a very common cancer found among males in their 40s. Most prostate cancer tends to remain confined within the gland, whereas others spread slowly and become aggressive.
Signs and Symptoms of Prostate cancer
There are absolutely no symptoms identifiable at the early stage. However, when the disease advances, there are certain signs, such as:
- Blood in urine
- Bone pain
- Blood in semen
- Loss of weight
- Erectile dysfunction
- Trouble urinatin
Thus, it becomes quite necessary to consult with the best urologist in Kolkata before it is too late.
Risk factors leading to Prostate cancer
There are many risk factors that, when combined, lead to the development of prostate cancer. Generally, screening is done in males above the age of 40 to understand the development of cancer. So, the basic questions that you need to ask are:
- Does any of your family members have prostate, ovary, colon, or pancreatic cancer?
- Does your family have a history of gene mutation?
- How old are you, and when should you start screening for prostate cancer?
Other than this, the risk of prostate cancer prevails among men:
- Individuals who are above 65 years old.
- Have an ancestry of African American men and Caribbean men.
- Share the family gene of cancer.
- Obesity can lead to cancer.
How is prostate cancer screening done?
The golden standard test applied for prostate cancer screening is PSA, Prostate Specific Antigen Test. With this, the level of Prostate Specific antigen in the blood is measured. PSA is actually a protein that is produced by the prostate cells, and the amount increases during prostate cancer. Because a cancerous cell tends to produce more PSA. So, there is a spike of PSA in the blood.
This is the first test that every medical specialist would recommend. Thus, any temporary increase in the PSA level would help them take precautionary steps. The increase in PSA can even be due to an infection, but monitoring the level and keeping it within the normal range can prevent the chances of cancer.
What if the PSA test is found to be high?
If the PSA result is found to be high, then the test is again repeated after a couple of weeks. This helps confirm that you have prostate cancer to avoid fluctuations. Further, it is always advised to carry out the test in the same laboratory as the previous one to avoid confusion.
Other tests to detect prostate cancer
After the PSA screening test, your doctor may ask you to go through a certain follow-up test or a biopsy. There are many supplementary tests that are considered, such as the Digital Rectal Exam (DRE), Free PSA test, PSA velocity or the rate of rising, PSA density, and PSA-based markers.
Other than this, the urinary PCA3 marker is also mandatory. The doctor may also ask you to go through an MRI, too. Other than a screening routine, there are certain tests that you have to undergo, such as cancer-specific blood and urine-based tests.
Why is the Digital Rectal Exam (DRE) considered to be important?
A Digital Rectal Exam is considered to be the baseline test where the doctor examines the prostate physically, whether it has changed its shape, become irregular, or enlarged. If there are any subsequent changes or if it has become bigger compared to the previous examination, it is definitely a red flag.
Do you need to go through both PSA and DRE?
Neither the PSA test (Prostate Specific Antigen Test) nor the DRE test (Digital Rectal Exam Test) can provide your 100% accurate result. There are chances of false positive and false negative results.
False positive results can lead to a biopsy even when the person does not have cancer. On the other hand, false negatives can provide a false sense of relaxation that they don’t have any cancer. Thus, both tests are quite essential to reach the conclusion.
Can Prostate cancer be cured?
Early diagnosis and detection can help to restrict cancer to a certain extent. Other than this, prostate cancer can also grow slowly and affect men who are in their 60s. So, even if the cancer is detected in its early stage, it may have little scope of treatment to be done due to age and other factors.
What are the complications associated with treatment?
Cancer treatment can also have serious side effects that affect the prostate gland. It can lead to a lack of urine control which is incontinence, and also lead to erection problems. Also, the patient may face metastasizing. Here cancer can spread to nearby organs, including the bladder, and get into the lymphatic system, affecting the bone and other organs. Thus, it makes the treatment difficult, and also the chances of getting cured also reduce subsequently.
According to the best urologist in Kolkata, you can follow certain practices to prevent the spread or occurrence of prostate cancer, such as:
- Try to eat healthily and choose a diet that consists of fruits and vegetables.
- Instead of depending on vitamin and mineral supplements, opt for food that can provide proper nourishment, including vitamins and minerals.
- Try to include regular exercise as it contributes towards overall health.
- Maintain proper weight and try to reduce the extra calories. Follow the BMI chart for a more specific result.
- Consult with a doctor about the increase of prostate cancer and ask for supplements that can reduce its developing chances.
Irrespective of the risk factors, you should talk to your doctor as immediately as you can. Only detection of prostate cancer, at the right time, can prevent the risk, and cancer can be seized at its early stage. At ILS Hospitals, you get the facility of advanced treatment and cancer screening. So, consult with a medical specialist before the threat prevails.
Ageing can be fun, but it brings new challenges such as wrinkles, lack of energy and unwillingness to participate in activities. Along with this, there are also functional changes within the body. The most-reported problem is – You might notice that even sneezing can result in involuntary leakage of urine or peeing. These circumstances can be embarrassing, but the good news is that it is treatable. The best urologist in Kolkata suggests Urodynamic testing to diagnose incontinence in urine passage. This test also detects additional urinary tract symptoms, such as infection and blockage, irrespective of male and female.
So, if your prescription reads urodynamic tests, here’s what you should be prepared for:
What do the urodynamic tests measure?
The most basic purpose of urodynamic tests is to understand the condition of the urinary system, which includes – the bladder, urethra, urine storage, sphincters and presence of infections.
The test reports give a clear idea about:
- Nerve and muscle functions are associated with the urinary system.
- Pressure building within and around the urinary bladder.
- Urinary flow rates and factors related to urinary discharge.
When does a urologist prescribe urodynamic tests?
- If there is urine leakage while doing any random activities
- Following incontinence in urine flow
- Sudden urges to urinate
- Unable to empty a full bladder
- Frequent urination (bladder remains full after peeing)
- Pain urination with a burning sensation
- Urinary tract infections
What are the primary urodynamic tests?
Urodynamic tests include a combination of tests that are prescribed based on the reported symptoms, such as –
This test helps to understand and measure the leak point pressure. Catheters are used to measure the pressure inside the bladder to know how much urine it can hold. It also determines the elasticity, and pressure flow and detects abnormal contractions.
In this test, electrode patches are placed near the urethra and rectum to record the electrical activity of the muscles and nerves associated with the sphincters and bladder.
You have to have a full bladder to proceed with this test. You need to urinate into special equipment that automatically measures the amount and flow rate. This creates a graph that notifies about any changes and detects blockage.
Postvoid residual measurement
This is measured with ultrasound equipment to understand the amount of urine left in your bladder after you empty it.
Video urodynamic tests
It is a combination of cystometry, uroflowmetry, and X-ray cystography urinary tests. This helps to determine the proper bladder and urethral function and shows the changes in size and shape of your bladder.
How can you prepare for a urodynamic test?
Urodynamic tests do not require any particular preparation routine. You might be asked to change certain fluid intake habits or restrictions on certain medications until the test is complete.
But, these are just for a few hours before the examination. However, few particular tests require you to keep your bladder full before you come for examination. Or, you might be instructed to drink fluid after arriving at the diagnostic centre— Consult with the best urologist in Kolkata prior to the test.
Is it painful? Are there any risks?
The level of discomfort tends to vary from person to person and lasts for a few hours. Some women reported a slight burning sensation after the test, while others didn’t. You may feel discomfort while peeing after the test.
So, you are advised to stay hydrated, drink enough water, use a warm damp cloth to dab at the urethral opening to get relief and avoid caffeine for the next 24 hours. Often, prophylactic antibiotics are prescribed to avoid the chances of UTIs.
There is no risk, but if the level of irritation increases, you must consult with the renowned urologist in Kolkata at ILS Hospitals for a follow-up.