Does a word ending with “…ologist” cause a bit of confusion for you? In our world of specializations, we are so fortunate to have doctors who are experts in treating our different body parts and organ systems. But what exactly does a urologist do? A urologist is a doctor who specializes in treating conditions affecting the male reproductive organs, as well as the male and female urinary tracts. In order to know how a urologist can help you, it is beneficial to know some basics about male reproductive anatomy as well as the body parts making up the urinary tract. Here are some anatomy basics pertaining to urology:
The Male Reproductive Organs
The penis and testis are two of the main male reproductive organs. The testis, or testicles, are responsible for making testosterone, the primary male sex hormone, and for making sperm. The penis delivers the sperm during intercourse. If the reproductive organs are not in healthy working order, they can interfere with hormone levels, sex drive, and ability to reproduce. Your urologist can diagnose and treat conditions including infections and diseases such as testis cancer and penile cancer which affect these organs. In addition, your urologist can treat sexual dysfunctions such as premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction, Peyronie’s disease, and conditions causing male infertility.
The Male Urinary Tract
The basic function of the urinary tract is to produce, store, and release urine in order to rid your body of its liquid wastes. The kidneys, ureter, bladder, and urethra all play roles in the male urinary tract. Frequent or painful urination, urinary retention, and incontinence are problems that can occur when there is a problem with your urinary tract health. Your urologist can diagnose and treat conditions such as urinary tract infections, kidney stones, bladder stones, bladder cancer and kidney cancer in order to keep your urinary tract healthy.
In males, there is some overlap between reproductive and urinary tract organs, so the prostate gets its own special mention. The prostate manufactures semen which protects and carries the sperm during intercourse. The urethra runs through the prostate and allows urine to pass through and exit through the penis. There are conditions of the prostate which can interfere with both reproduction and urination. Your urologist can diagnose and treat an enlarged prostate, as well as screen for prostate cancer.
The Female Urinary Tract
The female urinary tract is similar to the male urinary tract, and includes the kidneys, ureter, bladder and urethra. The female patient can expect her urologist to diagnose and treat the same urinary tract conditions as those found in males, including infections, urinary problems such as incontinence, kidney and bladder stones, and cancer.
These are just the basics, and your urologist will further educate you regarding the reproductive and urinary tract anatomy. Knowing a little bit about male reproductive organs and the male and female urinary tract can help you to decide when to consult a urologist so that you can keep these parts in healthy working order.