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
Specializes in issues of impotence, erectile dysfunction, and voiding disorders
6. Renal Transplantation
Conducts kidney transplant surgeries after kidney failure
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
- 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.