- About Urology
- Definition of Urology
- Urology is the medical specialty that deals in the medical and
surgical diseases of the kidneys and urinary tract, which include the ureters, bladder and
urethra, and the male reproductive system and genitalia.
- The Field:
- Urology is one of the 1st specialties to branch out from the
mainstream medical profession. In fact, it is even mentioned in the original greek version
of the Hippocratic Oath, wherein specific prohibitions are
contained for physicans against cutting "persons labouring under the stone"
and to leave it to those who are practioners of this work. Urologic diseases has been
described as far back as the ancient Egyptians who did routine suprapubic cystostomies on
patients with urinary retention for bladder stones or enlarged prostates.
is one of the few fields that also dabble in pediatric and plastic / reconstructive
techniques. One peculiarity of Urology is that in most urologic operations, there is
usually a diagnosis. In fact, Urologists take great efforts to have the most accurate
working diagnosis prior to operating. This is unlike many operations in General Surgery,
wherein they do a significant number of exploratory surgery, wherein one operates not only
to cure, but also to find out what the problem is. In fact, Urologists are second only to
Radiologists and Radiotherapists as being the most "radioactive" doctors since
we rely strongly on radiographic and ultrosonographic studies. As a result, Urologists are
at least as skilled as Radiologists and Ultrasonologists when performing or reading
imaging studies of the genito-urinary tract, and these include CAT Scans and MRI's, as
well as Radionucleide scans.
- Urology is also one of the more "expensive" medical
specialties. "Expensive" in the sense for the doctor! In all specialties, there
are certain equipment or instruments that are absolutely essential to maintain a decent
practice, like an ECG machine for Cardiologists, ophthalmoscopes and slit lamps for
Ophthalmologists, Doppler Ultrasound machines for Obstetricians, etc. The Urologist's
usual armamentarium is quite extensive. The minimum set of instruments a Urologist needs
is a cystoscope and resectoscope set. This can run up to tens of thousands of US$. And
this doesn't include other instruments that although are not essential, are quite
convenient to have like a ureteroscope (flexible and / or rigid), a visual urethrotome, an
Otis urethrotome, a cystolithotrite, a nephroscope, the list goes on....
- Within the past decade, the field of Urology has been on a rapid
rise with the development of extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy, laser &
laparoscopic surgery, endourological advances and medical therapy for benign prostatatic
enlargement. Indeed, Urology is one of the most exciting fields today.
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