Male Urology Problems
While men and women can share many kinds of urological problems – kidney stones and urinary tract infections, for example – some disorders are unique to males.
The most notable, no doubt, are diseases and conditions related to the prostate. As part of a man’s sex organs, the prostate is a gland about the size of a walnut that surrounds the urethra. Its job is to add fluid to the semen during ejaculation.
For younger men (under the age of 50), the most common prostate problem is prostatitis, which is inflammation of the prostate.
For men older than 50, the most common prostate problem is prostate enlargement. This condition is also called benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH.
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The prostate gland can also play a role in incontinence or urinary control problems, a factor that obviously does not affect control problems in women.
As a man ages, his prostate keeps growing and squeezes the urethra. Since urine travels from the bladder through the urethra, the pressure from the enlarged prostate may affect bladder control. But urine leakage, frequent urination, or the urgent need to urinate doesn’t have to be unavoidable parts of aging. Bladder control problems can be treated.
Learn more: men’s conditions
One of the most common urological conditions, BPH simply means a prostate gland grows in size over time. As the prostate enlarges, it compresses the urethra, and this compression can contribute to urination problems such as a weak stream, difficulty urinating, or a sensation of frequent need to urinate.
Erectile dysfunction, or ED, is the medical term for trouble in getting or keeping an erection. Also known more traditionally as "impotence," ED is most often the result of health problems that pose more serious complications if left untreated.
A hydrocele is a fluid-filled sac surrounding a testicle, and sometimes both testicles can have a hydrocele.
Most people do not report pain from the hydrocele, and the most common symptom is a swollen scrotum.
Hydroceles are most common in newborns, but can also occur in men as they age or due to trauma or infection.
Male infertility issues generally centers around several issues: low sperm counts, abnormal semen parameters (such as sperm motility issues or abnormally shaped sperm), abnormal male hormones, and "zero sperm counts" (azoospermia).
Prostatitis is swelling or inflammation of the prostate gland, a small walnut-shaped gland located below the bladder in men. It produces semen, the fluid which contains sperm.
Low testosterone is a condition in which the man does not produce enough of the testosterone hormone. Low testosterone is very common and affects around 40 percent of men 45 and older.
Learn about the symptoms and types of incontinence and overactive bladder causes in men, then the treatment options available in our continence center.
Prostate cancer is the abnormal growth of prostate cells, whereby the cells grow out of control. Prostate cancer comes is various types, from a very slow growing type to a very fast growing type.
Testicular or testis cancer is a relatively rare cancer that tends to occur in younger men (under age 40). In North America, men have a chance of one in 240 of developing testis cancer during their lifetime.
Many couples choose this means of birth control because a vasectomy is less invasive than a tubal ligation, the procedure used to prevent a woman's eggs from reaching the uterus, and because it also is more easily reversed. In a vasectomy, a surgeon performs a simple procedure to cut and close off the vas deferens, the tubes that carry sperm from the testes.
The success rate for a vasectomy reversal varies depending on the time interval from the vasectomy to the reversal, and how the vasectomy was done. The success rate can be as high as 98 percent in very favorable situations, or as low as 25 percent in less favorable circumstances.
Learn more: general urologic conditions
Normally, as your bladder stores urine, your pelvic floor muscles contract to support your bladder and hold urine in without leaking. Bladder control problems occur when your pelvic muscles weaken. There are different types of bladder control problems.
A bladder infection, also called cystitis, is the most common of all kinds of urinary tract infections (UTIs). Some people, mainly women, develop bladder and other urinary tract infections because they are prone to such infections the way other people are prone to getting coughs or colds.
A kidney stone is a hard mass developed from crystals that separate from the urine within the urinary tract. Normally, urine contains chemicals that prevent or inhibit the crystals from forming. These inhibitors do not seem to work for everyone, however, so some people form stones.
Bladder control problems, or overactive bladder, prevent you from controlling when and how much you urinate. Patients can experience a variety of symptoms.
During a urinary tract infection, the lining of the bladder and urethra becomes irritated just as the inside of the nose or throat does during a cold.