Garden Park Medical Center has experts on our medical staff that specialize in urinary and reproductive health in men and women.
What is a Urologist?
A urologist is a highly trained physician specialized in diagnosing and treating disorders and diseases involving the urinary and reproductive tracts. Garden Park Medical Center providers perform urological surgeries, manage patients’ urological conditions and treat sexual conditions, such as erectile dysfunction, in men.
When to see a urologist
Any of the following symptoms suggests a problem in the urinary tract. See a urologist if you experience:
- Blood in the urine
- Difficulty urinating
- Frequent or urgent need to urinate
- Pain in the lower back, pelvis or sides
- Pain or burning during urination
- Urine leakage
- Weak urine flow or dribbling
Men who experience any of the following urological symptoms should also visit a urologist:
- Decreased sexual desire
- Lump in the testicle
- Trouble getting or keeping an erection
Conditions We Treat
The complexity of the urinary and reproductive tracts can create many disorders and illnesses. Garden Park Physician Group urologists work with in a multidisciplinary team of providers to treat a variety of urological conditions, including but limited to:
Cancer: Urological cancers can involve the bladder, kidneys and adrenal glands, as well as other parts of the urinary tract. In men, cancer may occur in the prostate, testicles or other parts of the reproductive system.
Erectile dysfunction (ED): Often a symptom of an underlying condition, erectile dysfunction occurs when the penis cannot achieve sufficient rigidity for sexual intercourse.
Incontinence: Incontinence is a malfunction in the urinary system that results in a loss of bladder control. It’s often caused by weakening of the pelvic floor muscles during pregnancy.
Kidney disease: Damage to the kidneys can lead to swelling of the hands and ankles, high blood pressure and other symptoms. When the kidneys no longer work, kidney failure occurs, which can be fatal.
Kidney stones: Kidney stones are small, hard deposits of mineral and acid salts that form in the kidneys, affecting urination and causing extreme pain.
Male infertility: Male infertility can be the result of damage to the reproductive system or a variety of sperm-related disorders.
Painful bladder syndrome: Also called interstitial cystitis, this chronic inflammation of the bladder can cause mild to severe discomfort.
Prostatitis: Prostatitis is an infection or inflammation in the prostate, which can make urination or ejaculation painful.
Renal transplant: Following kidney failure, a kidney transplant is necessary to preserve life.
Urinary tract infection (UTI): Primarily affecting women, urinary tract infections occur when bacteria migrate from the digestive tract to the urethra. The infection causes abnormal and painful urination.
Diagnosis & Treatment
Some mild urinary problems, such as urinary tract infections, can be diagnosed and treated by a primary care provider. However, a referral to a urologist is necessary for more serious problems. Garden Park Medical Center specialists may use the following tests to identity and diagnose urological conditions:
- Computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans
- Cystogram (X-ray of the bladder)
- Cystoscopy (looking inside the urinary tract with a small scope)
- Urine tests
- Urodynamic tests (to measure the pressure and volume inside the bladder)
Your urological treatment will depend on the type of condition you have. Our Garden Park Medical Center urologists may suggest medical management (including medication) or surgery to treat your condition.
We may use any of the following medications to treat urological conditions:
- Antibiotics for infections
- Chemotherapy and hormone therapy for cancers (in partnership with medical staff oncologists)
- Drugs that smooth the muscle of the bladder for urinary incontinence
- Phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5) inhibitors for erectile dysfunction
Surgery may be necessary to treat many symptoms such as kidney stones. Surgery options at Garden Park Medical Center include:
- Laparoscopic, or minimally invasive surgery
- Laser therapy
- Open surgery
Our Urological Services
We offer treatments ranging from non-invasive methods, to minimally-invasive procedures using robotics and laparoscopy, to complex urologic surgeries. Some common services we provide are:
Ten percent of people will develop a kidney stone in their lifetime and half of the people that experience kidney stones will have a recurrence. The cause of kidney stones is unknown and they can grow in an unpredictable fashion.
What is a kidney stone?
Kidney stones are at type of crystal that can cause pain, infection and in some cases, kidney damage created from substances normally found in the urine. Little is known about what causes kidney stones, and over time, the small stones can pass out of the body, undetected along with urine. Large stones can obstruct the ureter, causing sudden and severe pain.
Do I have a kidney stone?
In addition to severe pain, common symptoms of kidney stones include:
- Flank pain or pain in your side
- Frequent urination and/or UTIs
- Blood in the urine
Kidney stone emergency
Kidney stones can be life threatening. You should seek immediate medical attention by visiting our emergency department or calling 911 if you are experience the following symptoms:
- Intolerable pain
- Consistent burning or blood during urination
- A consistently high fever above 101.5
- Persistent nausea and/or vomiting
How do I get rid of kidney stones?
At Garden Park Medical Center, we are proud to combine the expertise of our emergency medicine physicians with our board-certified urological specialists and advanced technology to ensure our patients receive the best care.
Treatment options include pain management and allowing the stone to pass by itself. We will work to get your pain under control as quickly as possible. Some pain can be treated and managed at home, and in some cases, your doctor can determine whether pain medication is necessary.
For larger kidney stones, the urological experts at Garden Park Medical Center will surgically treat you for kidney stone removal. Treatment decisions are based on the size of the kidney stone and the location in the urinary system.
- Cystoscopy is a type of kidney stone surgery that removes tissue samples for biopsies or removes small stones. Urologist specialists insert a thin tube, called a cystoscope, through the urethra then insert tiny surgical tools through the tube to remove the tissue or stones.
- Ureteroscopy uses small telescopes sent through the bladder, into the ureter, to look at the stones and either remove them or use a laser to break them apart.
Kidney disorder treatment
- Nephrectomy is the removal of a kidney that no longer functions, or the removal of a kidney to treat kidney cancer. This procedure is performed as a minimally invasive surgery.
- Partial nephrectomy is a procedure that removes the kidney cancer while saving the healthy part of the kidney. The entire tumor is removed and the kidney is reconstructed.
- Kidney cryotherapy freezes and destroys cancer cells using needles inserted through small incisions. The needles have liquid nitrogen that freezes and destroys cells on contact.
- Biopsy is the removal of sample tissue to examine for the presence of possible cancer or other disease, performed in a variety of ways depending on the location of the affected tissue.
- Prostatectomy is surgery to treat prostate cancer. This procedure partially or completely removes the prostate using a minimally invasive procedure, but at times may require open surgery.
- Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) is surgery that helps ease or eliminate urinary problems caused by an enlarged prostate. TURP is performed using minimally invasive robotic surgery or by using a laser to remove or destroy the excess tissue causing urine flow problems.
- Chemotherapy for bladder cancer including chemotherapy drugs sent directly to the bladder through a catheter.
- Transurethral Resection of the Bladder (TURB) is surgery to diagnose or remove bladder cancer. It‘s done using minimally invasive robotic surgery or by using a laser to remove the cancer and burn away any remaining cancer cells.
- Sling and suspension is a minimally invasive procedure that uses a small piece of woven polypropylene placed under the urethra to improve bladder support and stop leakage.
- InterStimTM implantation uses a neuro-stimulator that works like a pacemaker. It is implanted beneath the skin of the buttocks, and an electrode is then inserted next to the sacral nerves in order to regulate your urge “to go.”
- Botox® or collagen injections relax the bladder, causing it to expand, increasing storage capacity.
- Urethral dilation opens up or enlarges a urethra that has narrowed and is restricting urine flow by inserting tiny tubes that stretches open the urethra.
- Vasectomy is an outpatient procedure performed under local anesthesia during which the surgeon clips the tube that carries sperm from the testes. Primarily used as a birth control method, this technique can be used so that a vasectomy reversal is possible.
- Orchiectomy is an outpatient procedure to treat cancer during which the surgeon removes the testicle or testicles, in turn shrinking most prostate cancers.
- Mesh removal is a complex surgery performed on women who have severe complications from transvaginal mesh, which is meant to be a permanent treatment for pelvic floor disorders.
- Tape procedure using TVT (tension-free vaginal tape) or TOT (transobturator tape) is a technique that inserts a tape strip under the urethra to return a sagging bladder or urethra back to its normal position. The main difference between TVT and TOT is in how the surgeon reaches the urethra. The tape material may also differ.
- Autologous sling uses surrounding pelvic tissue from your own body that is stitched in place to form a support sling that works like the tape procedures.
- Anterior (top) and posterior (bottom), or “A and P,” repair for vaginal prolapse and hysterectomy involves an incision made on the top or bottom of the vagina. The tissue underneath the vaginal skin is put together to support the bladder or the rectum. Total vaginal hysterectomy with an A and P repair is the removal of the uterus and cervix through the vagina.