What Is Urology?
Urology is one of the most varied branches of surgery and encompasses diseases of kidneys, bladder and prostate, including incontinence, impotence, infertility, cancer and reconstruction of the genito-urinary tract. It caters for patients of both sexes and all ages, from newborn infants to elderly pensioners.
Over the last 20 years, urology has proved itself to be one of the most innovative surgical specialties. Urologists still use traditional surgical methods, but they have also pioneered modern, high-tech, fibreoptic and endoscopic techniques (sometimes called minimally-invasive surgery). We were one of the first specialties to use "keyhole" surgery routinely, and to use robotic assisatnce for complex surgery; we still retain the most comprehensive array of minimally-invasive techniques for patients.
GP referrals for urological problems have increased by 20% (one fifth) over the last 20 years. However, only 10-12% of patients (between 1 in 8 and 1 in 10) actually need surgery to treat their condition; this means that almost 90% of patients referred to a urologist do not need an operation and can be managed medically.
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