How Smoking Impacts Your Urological Health

quit smoking gulfshore urology reasonsNeed a reason to quit smoking? We’ll give you several. This dangerous habit has a significant impact on various parts of the body, including your urological health. While cutting out bad habits is never easy, understanding their impact is a great way to reignite your motivation to quit.

None of us want to be a statistic. Yet more than 16 million Americans fall into the category of having a smoking-related disease. With smoking ranking first in the list of preventable causes for death and disease, it’s high time that patients take this negative lifestyle choice seriously.

Below, you’ll find a few major urological conditions that are impacted by smoking, as well as the best approach to cutting the habit, and assuming a healthy lifestyle.

Urological Conditions Affected by Smoking

Whether smoking is the cause of your urological condition or an influencing factor, it’s proven to exacerbate many diseases. Some of the most common include cancer, infertility, and overactive bladder functions. Keep in mind that smoking’s impact isn’t limited to these common conditions. This is just a glimpse at how this one bad habit can negatively impact your urological health.

Smoking and Cancer

By now, the link between smoking and cancer is no surprise to anyone. However, knowing the statistics behind the risk factor often brings the truth of this statement home to our patients. Bladder and Kidney cancer are two common forms of cancer urologists diagnose and treat. Both of these have their own unique risk factors, but one thing they have in common is the significant increase in risk among patients with a smoking habit.

According to multiple kidney cancer cases recorded in the United Kingdom, an estimated 29 percent of men and 14 percent of women diagnosed with kidney cancer were cases caused by or linked to their smoking habits. Why? Because the chemicals in cigarettes enter the bloodstream, which is then filtered by your kidneys.

But your kidneys aren’t the only organs touched by these chemicals. For bladder cancer, the impact of smoking is just as significant. In fact, smoking tobacco is the most common risk factor, with patients who smoke becoming 4 to 7 times more likely to develop this form of cancer.

At this point, it is estimated that more than half of bladder cancer cases in men and between twenty to thirty percent of cases in women are caused by the effects of smoking. Like kidney cancer, this is due to the harmful chemicals and drugs that are packed into cigarettes.

As we stated previously, these chemicals enter your bloodstream only to be filtered out by your kidneys. Like all other waste the kidneys remove, these chemicals then get ejected from the body through your urine. As this happens, they come in contact with the lining of the bladder, which is what increases your risk of developing bladder cancer.

Erectile Dysfunction and Infertility

Wondering why things aren’t working the way they should “down there”? The problem might start with your smoking habit. Erectile Dysfunction (ED) and Infertility both can be triggered by your lifestyle habits, including smoking.

Smoking can trigger ED through the manner in which chemicals damage the blood vessels in your system. The effects of this damage includes reduced blood supply to the penis, which is essential to gaining and keeping an erection.

You don’t have to be older to experience ED either. Smoking’s impact on your sexual health can occur in any patient who smokes. In fact, smoking is the leading cause of ED in most young patients.

So what about fertility? Even if smoking hasn’t led to erectile struggles, you may still find that your sexual health is compromised. The risk of infertility doubles for both male and female patients who smoke. Why? The chemicals your body takes in while smoking directly impacts the genetic makeup of eggs and sperm, the overall health of the uterus, and the produce of hormones that are crucial to achieving a successful, healthy pregnancy.

Smokers experience reduced success from vitro fertilization as well as an increased chance of miscarriage or birth defects. However, there is good news. Patients who quit smoking can reverse these effects over the course of a year.

Ready to Stop Smoking?

Infertility, cancer, and ED is only a small taste of the negative impacts smoking can have on your body. If you’re ready to quit, we highly encourage you to speak to your doctor about the best approach to cutting out the habit.

Like many addictions or bad habits, quitting can feel like an uphill battle. Don’t attempt to do so alone. Instead, seek out the support of your friends, family, and doctor. Together, you can receive the tools, support, and encouragement to kick the habit.

When you quit smoking, you’ll experience numerous mental and physical benefits, including improved respiratory function, increased energy, a longer lifespan, and improved quality of living.

Gulfshore Urology is a Urology Office located in Southwest Florida. We have locations in Naples and Bonita Springs. To set an appointment, please call 239-333-3200.

  Rolando R. Rivera   Nov 09, 2017   Erectile Dysfunction   Comments Off on How Smoking Impacts Your Urological Health   Read More

How to Reduce Your Risk of UTI’s

Reduce risk of UTI Florida Gulfshore UrologyFlorida is known as the state of eternal summer where you can have fun in the sun all year long. However, there are certain risk factors for Urinary Tract Infections (UTI’s) that your daily activities can be contributing to—even if they’re healthy! Gulfshore Urology covers some of the most common habits that may be causing your infection, as well as suggestions on changes that will help you reduce your risk of UTI’s. Take a look!

Shed Those Wet Clothes Quickly!

Many Floridians, snowbirds, and tourists like spending the afternoon by the pool or splashing in one of Southwest Florida’s beautiful oceans, and why not? Swimming is an excellent form of exercise and it’s good for the body to soak in some Vitamin D.

However, running around in soaked clothing—even if it’s a bathing suit—can create an opportunity for an infection to start. Instead of lounging around in your swimsuit, change into some breathable, dry clothes as soon as you get out of the water.

The same goes for working out. When we sweat, we not only cool down our bodies but cleanse it of toxins as well. While you may be tired right after your visit to the gym, it’s important to shed those sweaty clothes, toss aside the damp towels, and take a shower.

Sweaty clothing, damp towels, and bathing suits can carry bacteria from your latest outdoor or workout activity, which then can travel up the urethra and cause a UTI. Women, who have shorter urethras than their male counterparts, are especially prone to this.

Drink Plenty of Water, and Drink It Often

This tip shouldn’t surprise anyone. Every doctor’s mantra to patients seems to include drinking plenty of water when advising patients on how to live a healthy lifestyle. However, there is a reason why we are so insistent on you picking up this habit. Water is essential to our body’s health, including the process of cleansing it of bacteria.

Don’t wait until you feel thirsty to start gulping down a glass of water. When your body starts to tell you it needs something to drink, it’s because you’re already dehydrated. Your body can’t function at an optimal level if you aren’t fueling it with the right fluids to keep it going.

Make sure you drink plenty of water, and drink it often. If you’re out in the sun for an extended period of time or participate in an activity that makes you sweat, drink even more to replenish the fluid you’ve lost!

We’ve all heard the one-sized-fits-all suggestion of 8 ounces a day, but the truth is that the amount of daily water intake you need varies based on your size, weight, activity level, and other factors. Instead, we recommend to let your body tell you.

Check your urine color. The clearer it is, the more hydrated you are. For more information, check out this article by Wed MD called Water and Your Diet. It provides a wealth of information on how water contributes to your body’s health, as well as suggestions on how much water to drink and at what frequency.

When You Gotta Go—Go!

Too often, when we really need to urinate, we hold it. This may be due to a long car ride, our preoccupation with a task or event, or simply the mere inconvenience of having to get up and use the bathroom.

However, holding in urine when your bladder is full is a bad idea. It’s important to listen to your body’s suggestions and urinate when you need to until your bladder is empty. Not doing so can give bacteria an opportunity to linger and turn into an infection.

Practice Good Post-Sex Practices

One of the most common causes of UTI’s is sex. Engaging in sexual activity allows for a transfer of bacteria that can easily make it’s way up a woman’s urethra. To help prevent these infections, always urinate after having sex. Also, make sure you and your partner practice good hygiene.

If you are experiencing symptoms of a UTI, including pain and burning during urination, frequent urination, cloudy, smelly, or bloody urine, or lower abdominal pain, consult your doctor. Frequent UTI’s may be an indication of another health issue and should be evaluated by a urologist.

Gulfshore Urology is a Urology Office located in Southwest Florida. We have locations in Naples and Bonita Springs. To set an appointment, please call 239-333-3200.

  Rolando R. Rivera   Nov 09, 2017   Uncategorized   Comments Off on How to Reduce Your Risk of UTI’s   Read More

Common Urological Issues in Men

common urological issues in menWhen it comes to addressing issues that arise “down below”, many men try to avoid a medical appointment due to embarrassment. However, the truth is that men encounter common urological issues at some point in their life. Young or old, it’s important to  know the symptoms of some of the more common infections or conditions should they arise.

After all, not every urological issues comes from old age! Several of our patients are in their 20’s and 30’s, proving that you’re never too young to be aware of what’s going on inside of your body.

A Few Statistics About Urology and Men’s Health

In many ways, men and women are wired differently. This is especially true in the field of urology as the physical anatomy of men and women differ, making each more resilient or more prone to different types of issues. Before we dive into the most common issues we see walking through the door, let’s touch on some of the statistics regarding urology and men’s health.

  • Most men who develop testicular cancer do so between the ages of 20 and 55 (The Urology Foundation)
  • 25% of all couples’ inability to become pregnant is caused by male infertility, and 75% of male infertility cases are caused by abnormal sperm (The Urology Foundation)
  • Men who are obese, physically inactive, older, experience chronic coughing, have BPH, or a history of prostate cancer are more prone to developing urinary incontinence (NIH)
  • Men who have diabetes are 2-3 times more likely to develop erectile dysfunction (NIH)

Both genetics and your daily habits can have a direct impact on your urological health, which is why it’s important to take care of your body through proper diet, physical exercise, and regular check-ups.

A Few Common Urological Issues in Men

While urology certainly isn’t limited to this list of conditions, it does encompass some of the most common issues that we see in our male patients on a regular basis. We hope that through familiarity, you’ll come to understand that you are not alone in your experience and that it’s important to seek help from a urologist should you experience symptoms like these.

Erectile Dysfunction

Whether you’re having trouble achieving an erection, maintaining an erection, or experiencing delayed ejaculation, rest assured you are not alone. Patients young and old have come to us for answers to these difficult issues, and we welcome them without judgment.

The cause of erectile dysfunction is broad, with many different influencing factors. Because this act is tied to physical, psychological, and emotional triggers, the cause can be any one or combination of causes. Some possibilities include certain medical conditions, obesity, depression, stress, alcoholism, drug abuse, sleep disorders, or side effects to certain surgeries or medical treatments.

If you experience symptoms of erectile dysfunction, a urologist can ask a series of questions and run tests to help identify the cause, as well as provide treatment options.

Enlarged Prostate

Did you know that men undergo two periods of prostate growth in their life? One is the obvious development undergone through puberty. The second phase begins typically in your mid-twenties.

How much your prostate enlarges during this second phase may cause the prostate to press on the urethra and weaken the bladder. As you get older, this problem can get worse. Men in their 50’s are most commonly diagnosed with enlarged prostate.

Symptoms include incontinence, difficulty urinating, frequent urination, painful or bloody urine, or the inability to completely empty one’s bladder. By seeking a urologist for diagnosis and treatment, you may receive medication as well as recommended lifestyle changes to help you reduce your symptoms. In severe cases, your urologist may recommend a surgical procedure to correct the issue.

A proper diagnosis is important, as many of these symptoms may also be a result of another common issue known as urinary incontinence (UI). UI can be the result of damaged nerves, weakened pelvic muscles, or other health issues.

Urinary Tract Infections (UTI’s)

While UTI’s are most common in women, men can and do develop them, too. UTI’s are caused by bacteria that fails to get flushed out of the urinary tract. This often occurs from an enlarged prostate, kidney stones, diabetes, catheter insertion, or health conditions that weaken one’s immune system.

Many of the symptoms of a UTI in a man are the same as the one’s experienced by women: a constant urge to urinate, abdominal or lower back pain, foul smelling, bloody, or cloudy urine, and a painful or burning sensation while urinating. However, there is one that is unique, and that is discharge seeping from the penis.

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see a doctor for treatment. He or she will likely be prescribed an antibiotic to kill off the bacteria.

Gulfshore Urology is a Urology Office located in Southwest Florida. We have locations in Naples, Bonita Springs, and Marco Island. To set an appointment, please call 239-333-3200.


  Rolando R. Rivera   Oct 18, 2017   Urology   Comments Off on Common Urological Issues in Men   Read More

Common Urological Issues in Women

common urological issues in women gulfshore urology Many times when you think of “urologist” you think of prostate cancer and kidney stones. However, these specialized physicians are responsible for treating far more conditions related to the urological system. This goes for men and women alike, but today Gulfshore Urology is focusing on common urological issues in women.

The urological system is wired differently based on your gender, which in turn leads to different conditions. Because of this, a good physician must approach his or her female patients with their unique needs and risks.

Female Statistics Regarding Urological Conditions

Did you know that women are twice as likely to experience incontinence as men? In fact, one in every three ladies experience stress incontinence at some point in their lives. Stress incontinence defines the involuntary leak of urine caused by coughing, laughing, sneezing, or even just walking from one place to another.

Bladder Cancer also has a unique impact on women. Even though men are more prone to this form of cancer, women typically have a worse prognosis and lower survival rate. This is why a good physician will recommend regular check-ups. This allows for early detection should you develop bladder cancer.

Also, Interstitial Cystitis (IC) impacts an estimated 3.3 million women. Commonly referred to as painful bladder syndrome, this condition is tricky because it has several different causes. Thus, the best course of treatment will be unique to each patient.

When to See a Urologist, and When to See Your Family Physician

A common question is when do you know when to see your urologist versus when you should see your family physician? There are certain conditions that may apply to urology that can be treated through general practice, while others may require a urologist. Depending on your symptoms and your healthcare plan, you made need a referral to see a specialist.

Below are a few common urological issues for women along with which type of physician should be consulted for treatment:

  • For a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI): UTI’s are common among women and are typically treated with a dose of antibiotics. If you experience symptoms of a UTI, your family doctor can both diagnose it and prescribe the proper antibiotic for treatment.
  • For Recurring UTI’s: If you find yourself having multiple UTI’s a year, it may very well be a symptom of a larger issue. For frequent UTI’s, you should consult your urologist who can implement the right tests, scans, or other measures to identify what is causing the recurring infection. It’s important to treat recurring UTI’s, as they can lead to several complications, including sepsis and premature delivery for pregnant women.
  • Overactive Bladder: For symptoms of an overactive bladder, it’s best to start with your family doctor. Due to the wide range of causes for this issue, a family physician can help narrow down the cause and refer you to a urologist if he or she finds it necessary.
  • Prolonged or Long-Term Bladder Pain: If you’re experiencing bladder pain that won’t go away, this could be a sign of IC. If you’re experiencing debilitating bladder pain that’s impacting you daily life or ability to work, definitely consult your urologist. As a specialist, he or she can help you determine the cause of your bladder pain as well as the best approach to ease your symptoms.
  • General Bladder Discomfort: Whether it’s signs of menopause or the onset of a UTI, your general practitioner can help you with a more general bladder discomfort.

Think of it like this: urologists specialize in serious or specific urological issues while your primary physician treats general infections and symptoms. Your family physician can also review your symptoms and refer you to a urologist should your symptoms require a specialist’s help to diagnose and treat.

When in doubt, you can also call your urologist if you have one already. Here at Gulfshore Urology, we treat all of our Naples and Bonita Springs patients like family. Just give us a call at 239-333-3200. We’ll be happy to answer any of your questions and set an appointment.


  Rolando R. Rivera   Oct 18, 2017   Urology   Comments Off on Common Urological Issues in Women   Read More

What is Delayed Ejaculation?

What is Delayed Ejaculation Gulfshore Urology FloridaDelayed ejaculation may sound like a good time, but those who experience it often struggle with the physical and psychological side effects this symptom can create. The reason for it can stem from various different causes, and not all of them are physical. Sometimes psychological or emotional factors may play a role. Other times it may be a combination of all three.

Delayed ejaculation may also be called impaired ejaculation. It is defined by a man taking an extended period of sexual stimulation to reach a climax and release semen from the penis. In some cases, this may lead to the man being unable to ejaculate at all (anejaculation).

Delayed ejaculation can be a temporary or lifelong issue, depending on its cause. It’s important to note that men will experience delayed ejaculation from time to time. This is completely normal.

Delayed ejaculation doesn’t have a specific time frame that indicates whether you’re having this issue. While some men with delayed ejaculation require over 20 or 30 minutes to achieve an orgasm, it can be defined by any case where you find yourself stopping sexual activity prior to ejaculation due to fatigue, loss of erection, or physical irritation. You should see a doctor when delayed ejaculation is ongoing or it becomes stressful for you or your partner.

What Caused Delayed Ejaculation?

Pinpointing the reason for delayed ejaculation can sometimes be tricky. Doctors have actually separated delayed ejaculation into certain types based on the patient’s symptoms. Those types are:

  • Lifelong: When delayed ejaculation is present since the patient’s sexual maturity
  • Acquired: When delayed ejaculation occurs under certain circumstances
  • Generalized: When delayed ejaculation is present only with certain partners or types of stimulation
  • Situational: When delayed ejaculation is limited to specific situations

Each of these types have different causes. The act of sexual stimulation and orgasm requires the collaboration of brain, nerves, and muscles. When one of these is off, it can impact your ability to successfully have sexual intercourse.

Sometimes this can be caused by drugs or disease interfering with your physical ability to climax. Your nerves are the messengers between your brain and your muscles. If the instruction to orgasm never makes it from point A to point B, you won’t be able to ejaculate. Low hormones or testosterone levels can increase your risk, too.

There are also psychological causes, such as depression, anxiety, fear, or shame. These can be both a reason for your delayed ejaculation or a side effect, depending on when they occur. Psychological causes can also be coupled with physical ones.

Lastly, you may simply be struggling to find adequate stimulation. If your sexual partner isn’t able to achieve the stimulation you’re used to for achieving an orgasm, it can prevent you from having one.

If you find yourself struggling with delayed ejaculation, don’t try to diagnose and resolve it on your own. Seeking help from a qualified health professional can help you pinpoint the cause and find a solution that works best for you.

Gulfshore Urology is a Urology Office located in Southwest Florida. We have locations in Naples, Bonita Springs, and Marco Island. To set an appointment, please call 239-333-3200.

  Gulfshore   Jun 06, 2017   Uncategorized   Comments Off on What is Delayed Ejaculation?   Read More

How Menopause Can Affect Urological Health

how menopause can affect urological health gulfshore urologyAs we get older, our bodies change. Hormones fluctuate and we experience symptoms we may not have had or known about in our younger years. It can be alarming for women to experience changes in their vaginal and urological health during menopause, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to learn to live with the symptoms.

Many women experience hesitation or an urge to ignore the different health issues that may arise with the age and a change in estrogen levels, but we encourage our patients to make an appointment. Many symptoms can be treated, such as vaginal dryness, frequent UTI’s, and more.

Here’s What You Need to Know About Menopause

Menopause is the end of a woman’s reproductive cycle. The symptoms may begin just before your body stops menstruating or after. Because the female body has a finite number of eggs that it produces within a lifetime, there comes a point when it stops producing them.

On average, this happens after 40, but for some women in may occur earlier. It’s usually triggered by a health condition or surgical procedure that may cause damage to the ovaries and their function. Hysterectomies, premature ovarian failure, and chemotherapy are both known causes of premature menopause.

However, natural menopause doesn’t just happen overnight. It’s a gradual transition that spans over several years. Perimenopause starts when the ovaries begin to produce less and less estrogen. This continues on until the ovaries stop producing eggs, which usually happens between 1 to 2 years after estrogen begins to drop. During this period, the symptoms of menopause begin to show.

After perimenopause is actual menopause. A woman doesn’t reach menopause until a year after their last menstruation. This is when eggs have ceased to release and most of your body’s estrogen ceases to be produced.

Symptoms of menopause include:

  • Hot flashes
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Mood changes
  • Urinary symptoms
  • Painful intercourse

Postmenopause is the rest of a woman’s years after menopause. During this time, the symptoms of menopause usually diminish. However, there are several bodily changes, symptoms, and health risks that tend to occur during this time. These health risks are caused to the loss of estrogen.

The good news is that many of them are treatable thanks to modern medicine.

Urological Conditions Caused by Menopause

There are several different urological conditions that arise in women during menopause. They are quite common, as well, and nothing you should feel shy about discussing with your urologist. We see these cases on a regular basis, understand how they can impede your quality of life, and can help you find solutions to help ease or eliminate negative symptoms.

One of the most common issues is frequent urinary tract infections (better known as UTI’s). The frequency during and after menopause is caused by changes in the urinary tract, which occur due to a lack of estrogen.

This lack of estrogen allows bad bacteria to thrive, overpowering the good bacteria in your system and causing infections. Drinking plenty of water can help flush the bad bacteria out of your system. However, women with frequent UTI’s (two or more over the span of six months) may be recommended topical estrogen cream by their doctor.

Menopause can also cause issues with incontinence. Again, this is a result of the lack of estrogen, which supports the tissues within the urinary tract. Weakened tissue can lead to incontinence, yet there are several lifestyle changes that can lessen or help eliminate this issue.

Reducing bladder irritation, scheduling bathroom breaks every two to three hours, practicing Kegel exercises, quitting smoking, and losing excess weight are all great ways to help lessen the impact of incontinence.

You also are at heightened risk for kidney stone and kidney disease. The best way to keep your kidneys in good health, especially in your older years, is to stay hydrated, eat well, exercise, and lead a healthy lifestyle.

If you find yourself experiencing symptoms of menopause or any of the associated urological issues, be sure to set up an appointment with your doctor. It’s important that you identify and address these medical issues so that you can prevent them from getting worse. There are safe and effective solutions available to treat the urogynecological consequences of menopause.

Gulfshore Urology is a Urology Office located in Southwest Florida. We have locations in Naples, Bonita Springs, and Marco Island. To set an appointment, please call 239-333-3200.


  Gulfshore   Jun 06, 2017   Uncategorized   Comments Off on How Menopause Can Affect Urological Health   Read More

5 Reasons to See a Urologist

5 Reasons to See a Urologist

Gulfshore Urology Reasons to See a UrologistA primary care physician may not always refer a patient when they should. Sometimes you have to make that executive decision for yourself, which is why it’s important to know the reasons to see your urologist.

A urologist is a specialist who centers their practice on treating disorders involving the male and female urinary tract and male reproductive system. This includes a wide array of concerns involving your urinary tract, bladder, prostate, kidneys, fertility, sexual dysfunction, and certain cancers.

However, there are certain problems in which a visit to your urologist is an absolute must! Gulfshore Urology has put together a list of 5 reason to see a urologist so you know when it’s time to pick up the phone and make an appointment.

Blood in Urine

Hematuria, or blood in your urine, is often a sign that something is seriously wrong. You never want to wait to see if it simply “goes away.” Bloody urine can be a sign of a urinary tract infection (UTI) or kidney stones, both of which can quickly become a serious problem. It can also be an early sign of bladder or kidney cancer. Experiencing this once is enough for you to pick up the phone and make an appointment with your urologist.

Issues with Bladder Control

Also known as urinary incontinence, struggles with bladder control can affect patients of all ages. Women are twice as likely to develop these issues as men. Bladder control issues can include the frequent need to urinate, leaking, trouble urinating, or pain when urinating. There is also a syndrome called interstitial cystitis in which the bladder feels as if it is always full. This form of discomfort may cause patients to feel the need to urinate as often as 60 times a day. Causes for these bladder control issues can vary and are best diagnosed by your urologist, not a primary care physician.

Male Infertility

If you’re a man have trouble getting your partner pregnant, you should seek the help of a urologist to diagnose and treat the condition. Male infertility is due to a low sperm count, sperm abnormalities, erectile dysfunction, or blockages that prevents the sperms’ delivery. There are multiple lifestyle, health, and mental factors that may play a part in male infertility. A urologist will run a series of tests to help determine the cause and prescribe a solution.

Pain or Abnormalities in the Male Reproductive Organ

If you suffer from penis or testicular pain that does not resolve itself within a week or two, it’s time to see a urologist. Penile pain can include every aspect of the organ: the base, head, shaft, and foreskin. Feelings such as burning or throbbing may be signs of a UTI or another form of bacterial infection. It could also be a sign of penile cancer. If you experience continual discomfort or find a mass within the penis or testacles, you should immediately consult a urological professional.

Erectile Dysfunction

The inability to achieve or maintain an erection is an uncomfortable subject. However, it is not the type of issue you want to try and “will away.” Due to the complicated nature of achieving an erection, it’s you’ll want to consult a urological specialist. A self-referral may be necessary instead of waiting on a referral from your primary care physician. The causes of erectile dysfunction can be contributed to one or more physical or psychological factors which can be identified through a series of questions and tests.

Think You Have a Reason to See a Urologist?

If you’re ever in doubt as to whether you should see a urologist, pick up the phone and ask! Gulfshore Urology has office locations in Marco Island, Naples, East Naples, and Bonita Springs. Give us a call at 239-333-3200 if you have any inquiries or would like to setup an appointment.

  Rolando R. Rivera   Jul 27, 2016   Erectile Dysfunction, Male Infertility, Urinary Incontinence, Urology   Comments Off on 5 Reasons to See a Urologist   Read More

What is Erectile Dysfunction: Causes, Symptoms, and Prevention

facts about erectile dysfunction gulfshore urology

Erectile dysfunction is a common disorder. It afflicts between 20 and 30 million men in the United States alone, yet only 5 to 10 percent of those individuals ever seek treatment. The stigma behind this particular disorder keeps many patients from ever crossing the threshold of a doctor’s office, though many of these issues can be corrected depending on the cause.

Symptoms of Erectile Dysfunction

The definition of erectile dysfunction is when a man fails to get or keep an erection firm enough to complete sexual intercourse. The severity of this issue can vary. Erectile dysfunction typically occurs in men above the age of 40, though it can occur in younger men as well.

Symptoms include:

  • Trouble producing an erection
  • Trouble keeping an erection
  • Trouble ejaculating during intercourse
  • A reduction in sexual desire

Erectile dysfunction has been linked to diabetes, heart disease, and other serious health conditions, which is why it is important to schedule an appointment with your doctor if you’re suffering from one or more of these symptoms. However, the cause is not always limited to physical ailments.

Causes of Erectile Dysfunction

The act of sexual arousal for men isn’t just a physical reaction. It’s a complex process that requires a collaboration of psychological, emotional, and physical factors. Some of the most common causes of erectile dysfunction are:

  • Certain medical conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome, Peyronie’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, and prostate cancer
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Being overweight
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Stress
  • Smoking
  • Alcoholism
  • Drug Abuse
  • Sleep disorders
  • Side-effects from certain surgeries or medical treatments
  • Injury

Diagnosis and Treatment

There are several tests and examination that a doctor may recommend to help diagnose erectile dysfunction. He or she will likely start with a physical examination and questions about your symptoms before recommending the best form of testing. This may include a urine test, blood test, ultrasound, or an overnight erection test.

However, if your symptoms seemed to be related to a psychological or emotional trigger, your doctor may recommend a screening for depression or other possible causes.

Treatments may include oral medications, injections, pumps, surgery, implants, or psychological counseling.


There are ways to prevent erectile dysfunction. Many revolve around your lifestyle choices, such as:

Cut out Addictive Habits

If you smoke or are struggling with alcohol or drug problems, quit. Seek help if necessary as these habits can also cause serious, long-term health issues.

Address Emotional Hurdles

Consider individual or couples counseling to help work through relationship issues, stress, or bouts of depression.

Lose Weight

Shedding excess weight will help treat and prevent erectile dysfunction.

Remain Physically Active

Exercise reduces stress, helps you lose weight, and helps improve your cardiovascular health.

Schedule an Appointment

Gulfshore Urology is a urological practice located in Bonita Springs, Florida. We deliver exceptional care in a private setting that allows for a more personal and personable approach to medical treatment.

If you are a patient struggling with symptoms of erectile dysfunction, give us a call at 239-333-3200 to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced doctors.

  Rolando R. Rivera   Jul 15, 2016   Erectile Dysfunction   Comments Off on What is Erectile Dysfunction: Causes, Symptoms, and Prevention   Read More

What is a Urologist?

What is a Urologist

What is a urologist exactly? It’s not an uncommon question. There are many different practice areas in the medical field. On top of that, many doctors choose a specialty that they focus their practice in. Urology is one of them.

By definition, urology is the branch of medicine and physiology that focuses on two things: the condition and treatment of the male reproductive system, and the operation of the male and female urinary system along with any anomalies or disorders that may occur within it.

There are several sub-specialties that physicians within the urological practice focus on. The American Urological Association has defined seven in particular:

1. Urologic Oncology

Focuses on the treatment of cancers related to the urinary system and male reproductive system

2. Male Infertility

Conducts corrective surgeries and remedying obstructions within male genitalia

3. Pediatric Urology

Treats complex urological problems within children that cannot be remedied by general pediatricians or urologists

4. Female Urology

Addresses issues with urological problems unique to women, such as urinary incontinence and pelvic outlet relaxation disorders

5. Neurourology

Specializes in issues of impotence, erectile dysfunction, and voiding disorders

6. Renal Transplantation

Conducts kidney transplant surgeries after kidney failure

7. Calculi

Manages the various stones that form within kidneys and move their way into ureters

Due to the wide scope of clinical issues that can arise within this field, many urologists bear knowledge of internal medicine, pediatrics, gynecology, and more.

What Conditions Do Urologists Treat?

The list of conditions treated by urologists is extensive. However, some of the most common include:

  • Bladder, Kidney, Prostate, and Testicular Cancer
  • Bladder Prolapse
  • Prostatitis
  • Cryptorchidism
  • Interstitial Cystitis

There are several other surgeries and conditions that are unique to urologists. However, it is safe to assume that anything regarding the urinary system and male reproductive organs would likely fall into their field.

How Often Should I Visit a Urologist?

Healthy men and women under the age of 40 typically don’t make regular visits to the urologist unless they are experiencing symptoms of a condition that falls under their area of expertise.

However, the American Urological Association highly recommends that once men reach the age of 40, they begin to schedule annual prostate cancer screenings. These screenings are proactive efforts, much like an annual checkup.

Are You Experiencing Symptoms of a Urological Condition?

Whether you’re 16 or 61, if you’re experiencing complications or symptoms related to the urinary system or male reproductive system, you should schedule an appointment with your local urologist immediately.

Gulfshore Urology is a leading urology practice with several offices in southwest Florida, including one on Marco Island, two in Naples, and one Bonita Springs. If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of our expert physicians, simply give us a call at 239-333-3200.

  Rolando R. Rivera   Jun 16, 2016   Urology   Comments Off on What is a Urologist?   Read More

Can You Prevent Prostate Cancer?

prevent prostate cancer gulfshore urology

Approximately 1 out of every 7 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer within their lifetime. With over 220,000 new cases and over 27,000 deaths each year, it has risen to become the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths for men in America.

Because the exact cause of prostate cancer is still unknown, there is no fail-safe method to prevent it. However, results yielded from years of research have helped medical professionals define risk factors that patients can identify to help lower their chances of developing prostate cancer.

What Elevates My Risk of Prostate Cancer?

Statistics have identified several trending factors that increase your risk for developing it, including:

  • Age: Prostate cancer is rare among young men. It is usually diagnosed in adult males in their 60’s or over.
  • Race: African American men are at the highest risk for developing prostate cancer and double the risk of dying from it, whereas men of Asian descent are least likely to develop it
  • Inherited Genes: Your family’s medical history can often help you anticipate what types of ailments, cancers, or diseases your body is most prone toward. Men who have a history of family members with prostate cancer will have a higher risk than those who do not.
  • Lifestyle: Lifestyle plays a pivotal role in both short-term and long-term health. It is the factor that individuals have the most control over.

What Can I Do to Prevent It?

While many studies have and continue to be conducted in search of a root cause for prostate cancer, the lack of definitive proof makes it difficult to pinpoint how to prevent it.

However, that doesn’t mean you can’t take steps to reduce your risk. The best way to reduce your risk of developing prostate cancer and other diseases later in life is by embracing a healthy lifestyle. Consider implementing these 4 habits into your daily activity:

  • Eat Well: Pursue a low-fat diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, and fish. A healthy diet fuels the body and helps maintain optimal functionality.
  • Maintain a Healthy Weight: Additional weight places stress upon the body and causes a variety of long-term health problems. Men with a BMI of 30 or higher should make a conscious effort to lose weight.
  • Exercise Regularly: Most studies have shown that men who exercise regularly do have reduced odds of developing prostate cancer. To maintain a healthy exercise routine, you should aim to be active for at least 30 minutes every day.
  • Avoid Unhealthy Habits: Habits such as smoking and recreational drug-use should be eliminated. Drink only in moderation and avoid over-supplementation. Remember that everything you put into your body has an effect.

What to Do if You Show Signs of Prostate Cancer

If you are experiencing symptoms of prostate cancer, including frequent urination or problems urinating, bloody urine, erectile dysfunction, pain in your hips and back, or numbness in your lower extremities, schedule an appointment with your doctor immediately.

Gulfshore Urology is located in Bonita Springs, Florida and accepts patients in the Lee and Collier county areas. To set up an appointment, give us a call at 239-333-3200.

  Rolando R. Rivera   Jun 15, 2016   Prostate Cancer   Comments Off on Can You Prevent Prostate Cancer?   Read More