If we had to guess the most popular last words for men “it’ll be fine” would be at the top of our list. Men are notoriously known for avoiding medical care, or at least putting it off until absolutely necessary. The problem with that is that many serious diseases and issues are much easier to deal with if they are caught early on. More so, when it comes to men’s sexual health, the tendency to avoid the doctor’s office is even greater.
A urologist is a doctor who specializes in the urinary tract and the male reproductive system. Their specialty covers not only your sexual health and function but also any diseases that could affect either system. While it can be a difficult issue to address it is important to both the quality of life as well as the length of life. So the question is, when should you go see a urologist. We’ve put this article together to give you an idea of what warning signs to look for that indicate it is time to go see your urologist.
1. Testicular Mass or Pain
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it is nothing to ignore or try to “walk off”. Pain or a mass on your testicles can be an indicator of several different serious issues. Beyond just your sexual health, a mass could be from testicular torsion, which must be fixed surgically and right away, or it could be a sign of testicular cancer. Prolonged issues or severe complications can usually be avoided If caught early enough.
2. Blood in Your Urine
This is known as hematuria. A big concern regarding hematuria is that it may not always result in visible blood. This could be an indication of cancer, so even if you only see blood in your urine once it is best that you see a urologist.
3. Abnormal Prostate Exam
If your PSA is elevated or you have a prostrate exam with abnormal results you should see a urologist. Prostate issues can have adverse effects on your sexual health, but it can also signify prostate cancer. Urologists agree that your chances of recovery are much better the earlier you detect prostate cancer. Additionally, in the event that you do have prostate cancer, a urologist is who you would have to see for determining treatment options.
4. Difficulty Urinating
It may not always be a serious concern, but having difficulty or the inability to urinate is a sure sign that it’s time to see a urologist. It may only require some minor treatment and a little time to recover, but it could be due to a larger issue. Prolonged damage to you prostate can have severely negative effects on your sexual health and function, so it is best to act quickly.
5. Kidney Stones
Sure, you could see your general practitioner for pain medication to ease the agony of passing kidney stones, but a urologist can do much more. Regardless of where the stone is located, your urologist is specifically trained in procedures that can’t break up the stone non-surgically.
6. Mass or Tumor on Kidneys
Previous methods of testing kidney masses had the potential to expedite the spread of cancer. Thankfully, urologists are now often able to determine if a mass is cancerous by using one of the several non-evasive methods. These medical advancements are mostly due to the improvements in medical robotics, and greatly enhance the value of seeing your urologist.
7. Infertility in Men
The testing and exams required to determine infertility must be performed by a urologist. Typically the reasons behind why an individual is infertile can be successfully treated. However, if the sexual health issue is due to a more significant issue, surgery may be required. Regardless, the urologist would be the medical professional required to determine the proper action.
Don’t Avoid the Warning Signs
For most men, sexual health problems are their primary concerns when it comes to your prostate. While a urologist is the right professional to help you address your sexual health concerns, there are many other potential health issues that they can identify as well. Many of those other potential concerns can even be life threatening. Whether it is simply to ensure that you remain in the best sexual health state possible or to address a potentially serious issue, putting off a doctor visit is never a good idea.
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The Urologist: When and Why to See Them