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Texas Urology Glossary

Absorbent Products: Pads and garments, disposable or reusable, worn to absorb leaked urine. Absorbent products include shields, undergarment pads, combination pad-pant systems, diaper-like garments, and bed pads.

Anemia: A condition in which the blood is deficient in red blood cells, in hemoglobin, or in total volume.

Anxiety: A debilitating condition of fear, which interferes with normal life functions.

Autologous: Derived from the same individual.

Behavioral Techniques: Different methods to help "retrain" the bladder and get rid of the urgency to urinate. (see biofeedback, bladder training, electrical stimulation, habit training, pelvic muscle exercises, prompted voiding).

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: A condition in which the prostate becomes enlarged as part of the aging process.

Benign Tumor: A tumor that is not cancerous

Bilateral: A term describing a condition that affects both sides of the body or two paired organs, such as kidneys.

Biofeedback: A procedure that uses electrodes to help people gain awareness and control of their pelvic muscles.

Bladder: A hollow muscular balloon shaped organ that stores urine until it is excreted from the body.

Bladder Training: A behavioral technique that teaches the patient to resist or inhibit the urge to urinate, and to urinate according to a schedule rather than urinating at the urge.

Catheter: A tube passed through the body for draining fluids or injecting them into body cavities. It may be made of elastic, elastic web, rubber, glass, metal, or plastic.

Catheterization: Insertion of a slender tube through the urethra or through the anterior abdominal wall into the bladder, urinary reservoir, or urinary conduit to allow urine drainage.

Chancre: A hard, syphilitic primary ulcer, the first sign of syphilis, appearing approx. 2 to 3 weeks after infection. The ulcer begins as a painless lesion or papule that ulcerates. Occurs generally singly, but sometimes may be multiple.

Colon: The large intestine.

Creatinine: A waste product that is filtered from the blood by the kidneys and expelled in urine.

Cystocele herniation of bladder into vagina

Cyst: A lump filled with either fluid or soft material, occurring in any organ or tissue; may occur for a number of reasons but is usually harmless unless its presence disrupts organ or tissue function.

Cystectomy: Surgical removal of the bladder.

Cystoscopy: A flexible scope is inserted into the urethra and then into the bladder to determine abnormalities in the bladder and lower urinary tract.

Diabetes mellitus: A common form of diabetes in which the body cannot properly store or use glucose (sugar), the body's main source of energy.

Diuretic: A drug that increases the amount of water in the urine, removing excess water from the body; used in treating high blood pressure and fluid retention

Enterocele herniation of small bowel into vagina

Estrogen: Hormones responsible for the development of female sex characteristics; produced by the ovary.

Habit Training: A behavioral technique that calls for scheduled toileting at regular intervals on a planned basis. Unlike bladder training, there is no systematic effort to motivate the patient to delay voiding and resist urge.

Hormonal Therapy: Specific form of treatment for prostate cancer, in which testosterone production is reduced. Reducing the amount of testosterone in the body, the prostate cancer cells, which normally need testosterone for growth, are repressed, leading to decrease in size of the cancer. This is not a curative form of treatment. There are numerous side effects, including breast enlargement, hot flashes, decrease in sex drive, loss of muscle mass and bone loss.

Hydrocele: A painless swelling of the scrotum, caused by a collection of fluid around the testicle; commonly occurs in middle-aged men.

Hypermobility: A condition characterized in which the pelvic floor muscles can no longer provide the necessary support to the urethra and bladder neck. As a result, the bladder neck drops when any downward pressure is applied and causing involuntary leakage. This condition is the most common cause of stress urinary incontinence.

Hyperplasia: Excessive growth of normal cells of an organ.

Insemination: The placement of semen into a woman's uterus, cervix, or vagina.

InterStim Continence Control Therapy: A therapy used in treating urge incontinence. A device, about the size of a pacemaker, that is implanted into the sacral nerves of the lower spine, where it delivers electrical impulses that help regulate bladder function.

Intrinsic Sphincter Deficiency (ISD): Weakening of the urethra sphincter muscles. As a result of this weakening the sphincter does not function normally regardless of the position of the bladder neck or urethra. This condition is a common cause of stress urinary intinence.

Irritable Bladder: Involuntary contractions of muscles in the bladder, which can cause lack of control of urination.

Kegel Exercises: Exercises to strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor, which leads to more control and prevents leakage.

Kidney: One of a pair of organs located at the back of the abdominal cavity. Kidneys make urine through blood filtration.

Kidney Stone: A hard mass composed of substances from the urine that form in the kidneys.

Laparoscopy: A surgical procedure in which a telescope is used, inserted into the abdominal cavity through a small incision to diagnose and treat conditions.

Lithotripsy: A procedure done to break up stones in the urinary tract using ultrasonic shock waves, so that the fragments can be easily passed from the body.

Menopause: The period that marks the permanent cessation of menstrual activity, usually occurring between the ages of 40 and 58.

Microwave Therapy of the Prostate: A catheter is inserted through the urethra, positioned into the prostate, and using antennae attached to the catheter, microwave energies are used to destroy selectively and a limited amount of prostate tissue.

Nephrectomy: Removal of a kidney.

Nephrostomy: A tube inserted through the skin into the kidney to drain the urine and relieve blockage.

Metastasis: The spreading of a cancerous tumor to another part of the body.

Mixed Incontinence: Having both stress and urge incontinence.

Orchiectomy: The surgical removal of one or both of the testicles.

Orchitis: Inflammation of a testicle.

Overactive bladder: A condition characterized by involuntary bladder muscle contractions during the bladder filling phase which the patient cannot suppress.

Overflow UI: Leakage of small amounts of urine from a bladder that is always full.

Pelvic muscle exercises: Pelvic muscle exercises are intended to improve your pelvic muscle tone and prevent leakage for sufferers of Stress Urinary Incontinence. Also called Kegel exercises. (see biofeedback and vaginal weight traning)

Percutaneous Nephrostomy: A telescope is inserted through the skin into the kidney typically to remove stones.

Periurethral bulking injections: A surgical procedure in which injectioned implants are used to "bulk up" the area around the neck of the bladder allowing it to resist increases in abdominal pressure which can push down on the bladder and cause leakage.

Post-void residual (PVR) volume: A diagnostic test which measures how much urine remains in the bladder after urination. Specific measurement of PVR volume can be accomplished by catheterization, pelvic ultrasound, radiography, or radioisotope studies.

Prostate: A muscular, walnut-sized gland that surrounds part of the urethra. It secretes seminal fluid, a milky substance that combines with sperm (produced in the testicles) to form semen.

Prostatectomy: Surgical removal of the prostate.

Prostatitis: Inflammation of the prostate

Pubovaginal Sling: A procedure in which artificial or natural occurring (cadaver) material is placed under the bladder to help lift the urethra and prevent incontinence.

Prostaglandin: Any of various oxygenated unsaturated cyclic fatty acids of animals that have a variety of hormonelike actions (as in controlling blood pressure or smooth muscle contraction).

Pyelonephritis: Inflammation of the kidney, usually due to a bacterial infection.

Pyuria: The presence of pus in the urine; usually an indication of kidney or urinary tract infection.

Rectocele herniation of rectum into vagina

Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD): Infections that are most commonly spread through sexual intercourse or genital contact.

Sling Procedures: Surgical methods for treating urinary incontinence involving the placement of a sling, made either of tissue obtained from the person undergoing the sling procedure or a synthetic material. The sling is anchored to retropubic and/or abdominal structures.

Sphincter: A ring of muscle fibers located around an opening in the body that regulates the passage of substances.

Stent: Is a plastic tube that is hollow on ends, with coils on each end that is typically placed between the kidney and bladder to promote and allow drainage of urine.

Stress Test: A diagnostic test that requires patients to lift something or perform an exercise to determines if there is urine loss when stress is placed on bladder muscles.

Stress Urinary Incontinence: Urinary Incontinence: The involuntary loss of urine during period of increased abdominal pressure. Such events include laughing, sneezing, coughing or lifting heavy objects.

Testosterone: The sex hormone that stimulates development of male sex characteristics and bone and muscle growth; produced by the testicles and in small amounts by the ovaries.

Transient urinary incontinence: Temporary episodes of urinary incontinence that are gone when the cause of the episode is identified and treated, such as a bladder infection.

Underactive bladder: A condition characterized by a bladder contraction of inadequate magnitude and/or duration to effect bladder emptying in a normal timespan. This condition can be caused by drugs, fecal impaction, and neurologic conditions such as Diabetic neuropathy or low spinal cord injury or as a result of radical pelvic surgery. It also can result from a weakening of the detrusor muscle from vitamin B12 deficiency or idiopathic causes. Bladder underactivity may cause overdistension of the bladder, resulting in overflow incontinence (see overflow incontinence).

Ureteroscopy: A flexible telescopic procedure in which a tube passed through the urethra, into the bladder, and up into the ureter (tube between the kidney and bladder) to visualize and possibly treat stones.

Urge UI: The involuntary loss of urine associated with a sudden and strong urge to void (urgency).

Urge/urgency: A strong desire to void.

Urinalysis: A group of physical and chemical tests done on a sample of urine to check for various disorders, including those of the kidneys and urinary tract.

Urinary incontinence:(UI) Involuntary loss of urine sufficient to be a problem. There are several types of Ul, but all are characterized by an inability to restrain voiding.

Urinary tract infection:(UI) An infection in the bladder, urethra, or prostate in men associated with urinary symptoms.

Urodynamic tests: Diagnostic tests to examine the bladder and urethral sphincter function.

Varicocele: Varicocele are excessive veins in the scrotum occasionally associated with infertility.

Vasovasostomy: Surgical reconnection of the ends of the vas deferens typically performed with a microscope.

Vasectomy: Surgical severing of the vas deferens for infertility.

Vesica Sling Procedure: is a surgical sling procedure used to stabilize the bladder neck and provide support for the urethra using autologous or synthetic sling material. This procedure treats both hypermobility and ISD (click HERE to see a diagram of this procedure).

LUTS is the term used for 'lower urinary tract symptoms', which include urinary frequency, urgency, decreased force of stream, difficulty starting urination, intermittency (stopping and starting of stream), and awakening at night to urinate.

BOO stands for bladder outlet obstruction. The bladder outlet is at the junction of the bladder and prostate.

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