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A urologist is a physician trained to diagnose and treat conditions related to the urinary system of both men and women. They are also specialized to deal with the male reproductive system, including sexual and fertility problems of men. Sometimes, performing associated surgeries is also under their expertise.
You will be referred to a urologist when you face any problem with urination and its associated conditions like frequent urination, any infection or tumor of the respective system, erectile dysfunction, kidney stones, etc. The tests performed by them include urine tests, ultrasound, cystoscopy, urodynamic testing, MRI, and CT, and accordingly guide you along with prescribing medicines when there is a need. If required, they will perform surgeries like cyst removal, prostate removal, tumor excision, clearing or removing the blockage, etc.
How easy it has become with online medical platforms to consult a urologist online regarding your doubts on conditions related to your urinary system. All you have to do is give a detailed information (past and present) of your problem along with certain tests and images to get an expert advice regarding diagnosis and treatment plan.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is a urologist?
Urologists are physicians who are trained to identify and treat diseases and conditions affecting the urinary system in both males and females. The urinary system works to form, store, and remove urine from the body, and it includes kidneys, ureters, urinary bladder, urethra, and adrenal glands. In males, they also treat problems of the reproductive organs like the penis, prostate, and testes.
Why should someone consult a urologist?
Consult a neurologist if you notice the following signs and symptoms:
- Blood in the urine.
- Urinary incontinence.
- Pain during urination.
- Lower abdominal or groin pain.
- An obvious bulge in the abdominal wall (hernia).
- Erectile dysfunction.
- Enlarged prostate.
What to expect during the first urologist appointment?
If you are experiencing symptoms that suggest some problems with the urinary system or a man’s reproductive system, then a urologist will perform physical examinations. For men, rectal examination, prostate examination, urethral swab to check for sexually transmitted diseases, and blood tests to check the level of PSA level are performed.
For women, urinalysis and pelvic examination are the most common tests performed.
What are the common conditions that urologists treat?
The common urologic conditions that urologists treat are benign prostatic hyperplasia, urinary incontinence, urinary tract infection (UTI), kidney stones, prostate cancer, blood in urine, erectile dysfunction, overactive bladder, and prostatitis.
Can a urologist treat STDs?
Most STDs (sexually transmitted diseases) cause skin lesions and urologic symptoms like pain during sex, pain on urination, blood in urine, lower abdominal pain, etc. So urologists and dermatologists are doctors who diagnose and treat STDs.
When should a male consult a urologist?
Men who are experiencing symptoms like prostate enlargement, erection problems, difficulty initiating urine flow, urine incontinence, and bloody urination should consult a urologist immediately.
What are the common tests that a urologist perform?
Some of the common tests that your urologist might suggest you get are:
- Blood test to check levels of PSA (prostate-specific antigen).
- Urine flow study.
- Semen analysis.
- Digital rectal exam.
- Post void residuals.
- Ultrasound of the abdomen and pelvic region.
- Prostate or bladder biopsy.
Can urologists perform surgeries?
Yes, urologists do perform surgeries when required. They can perform open or laparoscopic or laser surgery:
- To remove tumors affecting the urinary or male reproductive tract.
- To repair injuries.
- To remove kidney stones.
- To transplant a kidney.
- To relieve strictures from the urethra.
How does your urologist check the bladder?
To diagnose problems affecting the bladder, the urologist performs cystoscopy. Here, the doctor inserts a thin tube with a camera (cystoscope) into the bladder through the urethra. The insides of the bladder can be then magnified and visualized by the doctor with the help of the camera.