What does a urologist actually do: 5 questions for Dr. Reinhold Schaefer
Everyone knows that they are the experts in men's health. But urologists are also specialists in urinary and urinary organs such as the kidney, bladder, ureter and urethra. This automatically makes them the contact person for women, even if that sounds strange. But what exactly does a urologist do? Dr. Reinhold Schaefer from Uro-GmbH Nordrhein, a group of urologists based in NRW, answers the five most important questions:
What are the most common diseases that a urologist treats?
“The most common diagnoses among urologists are diseases of the prostate and cancer in the urological field, i.e. of the kidney, bladder, prostate, testicles and penis. Problems with urination, stone problems, infections, erection problems, fertility and hormone disorders are also among the most common clinical pictures. Last but not least, urologists are experts in urinary incontinence. "
Which investigation methods do you mainly use?
“Urine examinations have always been an indispensable method in medical and especially urological diagnostics to detect diseases or to observe their course. Blood tests and also urine tests provide evidence of kidney dysfunction, bacterial inflammation, evidence of cancer and play an important role in the diagnosis. Urine beam measurements, ultrasound examinations and X-ray examinations of the urinary tract are further important components of urological diagnostics. Bladder mirroring can provide direct evidence of a bladder disorder ”
What treatment options are important for a urologist?
“Basically, the treatment options of a urologist range from practical tips in discussions about the administration of medication, also as infusions, to outpatient operations. With a benign prostate enlargement, a tip on the right bicycle saddle is sometimes enough. Depending on the type of disease and the severity of the symptoms, drug or surgical therapies are used. Urologists today perform many operations on an outpatient basis, such as interventions to treat inguinal hernias, sterilizations, testicular biopsies, or operations to break water and testicles. Comprehensive hormone treatments for erectile dysfunction as well as radiation therapy or a new type of immune stimulation for cancer are also urological treatment options. Alternative therapies are rarely used in urological practices. However, there are practices that offer acupuncture for pain relief, for example. In all cases, the discussion between doctor and patient about the patient's symptoms and wishes, as well as the course and degree of the disease, paves the way for therapy and healing. "
Which individual health services (IGeL) make sense?
“Prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer in men. The most sensible IGeL service is the PSA test for the early detection of prostate cancer. In addition, I also recommend regular screening measures for bladder cancer and kidney cancer, also for women. ”
Where do your treatment options end in practice and when do you refer a patient to a hospital?
“Hospital admissions are necessary when operations that can be performed on an outpatient basis are no longer possible. Acute urological emergencies such as injuries to the kidney, bladder or urethra and a testicular tumor also require hospitalization. ”(Sb, pm)