While kidney stones, urinary tract infections, and bladder or kidney cancers can occur in both sexes, urologists also treat conditions affecting male organs, including the penis, testes, and prostate. Some male urological conditions, such a prostate infection or a mild case of benign prostatic hyperplasia, can be treated through medication. Others may require a trip to the hospital.
Prostate enlargement, or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a common problem in men over age 50.
(Learn more about the signs and symptoms of BPH)
Pressure from the enlarged prostate can cause urinary urgency, frequent urination, and leakage. Moderate symptoms are often treatable with medication. For more severe symptoms, our urologists have a variety of options:
- Robotic prostatectomy
Surgical removal of the prostate may be an option for patients who are healthy enough to have the operation. We offer the most cutting-edge techniques for robotic prostate surgery, including athermal nerve-sparing, bladder neck preservation, and extended pelvic lymph node dissections. The procedure required hospitalization, general anesthesia and most patients are discharged the day after surgery.
- Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP)
The surgeon inserts a scope through the urethra. A special cutting tool positioned through the scope uses electricity to remove part of the prostate. This is a minimally invasive, outpatient procedure.
- Transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP)
This surgery does not involve removing prostate tissue. With the patient under general or spinal anesthesia, the surgeon inserts an instrument into the urethra. The instrument generates an electric current or laser to make incisions in the prostate, next to the bladder. This relaxes the opening to the bladder and makes urination easier.
- Laser surgery
A small fiber inserted into the urethra delivers high-powered laser energy to the prostate, causing the enlarged tissue to dissolve or vaporize. Laser surgery for an enlarged prostate can be performed at our ambulatory treatment center, with the patient going home the same day.
- Transurethral microwave therapy (TUMT)
In TUMT, the surgeon inserts a microwave antenna attached to a flexible tube into the urethra and up to the prostate. Microwave energy heats the inside of the prostate, destroying excess tissue while a cooling fluid is circulated around the microwave antenna to protect the urethra walls. A general or spinal anesthetic is administered for this procedure, which usually does not require an overnight stay.
- Transurethral needle ablation (TUNA)
In this minimally invasive procedure, obstructive prostate tissue is destroyed by radiofrequency energy, using a needle-like instrument that is introduced into the urethra.
- Interstitial laser thermotherapy (Indigo® Optima Laser)
The Indigo® system uses an optic laser that travels through a catheter to the prostate gland. Heat from the laser coagulates excess tissue, which is eventually reabsorbed by the body. This highly accurate procedure is performed under local anesthesia on an outpatient basis.
- Water-Induced Thermotherapy (WIT™)
To use the AquaTherm™ WIT™ System, the urologist inserts a special catheter through the urethra. The catheter contains a treatment balloon that inflates inside the prostate and fills with heated water. The catheter raises the temperature of the gland and destroys the obstructive tissue. This procedure can be done on an outpatient basis and does not require general anesthesia.
Peyronie's disease is a painful curvature of the penis during an erection. The condition mainly affects men between the ages of 40 and 60 years. The curvature is caused by an accumulation of plaque-like scar tissue and can be as slight as 10 degrees or so severe that the penis takes on a "U" shape. Peyronie's frequently resolves itself over several months, so treatment may not be considered unless the curvature is severe enough to preclude sexual intercourse. If there is no improvement with time and nonsurgical therapies, surgery is the best means to correct Peyronie's:
- Incision/excision and grafting – Plaque is partially or completely removed, and the resulting space is covered by a graft.
- Plication – This surgery is performed to make the longer side of the penis shorter.
- Prosthetic implantation – This is the surgical implanting of a penile prosthesis.
A hernia is a condition in which part of an organ, usually the intestines, protrudes though a weakness or defect in the abdominal wall. This produces a soft, usually painless bulge. Hernias in the inguinal (groin area) are the most common, and tend to occur more in men. A hernia must be repaired through surgery to prevent “incarceration,” trapping of the intestines that can have serious consequences. Open surgery is still the treatment of choice for hernia surgery, which can be performed under local anesthesia at our outpatient surgical center.