Urology is a surgical specialty which deals with diseases of the male and female urinary tract and the male reproductive organs. Although urology is classified as a surgical specialty, a knowledge of internal medicine, pediatrics, gynecology, and other specialties is required by the urologist because of the wide variety of clinical problems encountered.
Another area of major urologic concern is that of congenital anomalies. The urinary tract is affected by congenital anomalies more than any other organ system. These congenital abnormalities run the gamut from the relatively common problem of cryptorchidism to the complex area of intersexuality. Most urologists do surgically repair many congenital anomalies in children, but the more complex problems are often referred to urologists with specialized training in pediatric urology.
Involvement of the urologist in the problems of renal insufficiency and end-stage renal disease has been necessitated by an enormous increase in the number of patients on dialysis and requiring transplantation. In a number of centers, urologists are the prime surgical arm for renal transplantation and, in others, serve as members of the surgical team. This practice has tended to increase the experience of the urologist in vascular surgery which has been beneficially incorporated into other areas such as renal vascular reconstruction and in the new microvascular surgical procedures performed for certain cases of impotence. The enhanced communication between nephrologist and urologist often leads to involvement in the general area of hypertension and adrenal disorders.