Urologic oncology offers care for cancer of the parts of the body that make and store urine. It includes the kidneys, prostate, ureters, bladder and urethra.
USMD urology doctors know a prostate cancer or urologic cancer diagnosis is scary. They also know each patient's treatment journey is different. That's why USMD offers a wide range of world-class options for treating prostate, kidney, bladder, testicular and penile cancer. With USMD, you get personalized care for your specific needs.
USMD doctors are experts in urologic oncology care, including prostate cancer treatment. They understand patients as real people and know incision size and technique matter. That's why they have access to the best equipment and technology, which often means smaller incisions, less scarring, faster recoveries, less downtime and fewer complications. Find a doctor or location near you.
What we care for
Most people are born with two kidneys. They’re very important to our health. Healthy kidneys work around the clock to clean your blood. Every day, about 150 quarts of blood pass through them. They remove waste and extra water from your blood and make urine. Then they send the urine to your bladder to hold until you’re ready to pee.
When kidney cells grow out of control, it’s called kidney cancer. Most of the time, it’s caused by your DNA changing and causing the cells to grow. It’s not a type of cancer that you inherit.
Kidney cancer is rare in people under age 45.OR
Most kidney cancer is found during a routine screening or when you go to the doctor for another reason. It’s rare to have symptoms in the early stages of kidney cancer.
A person whose kidney cancer is more advanced may have:
- Blood in urine
- Pain in the side, belly or back that doesn’t go away
- A lump in the abdomen
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss for no known reason
- Low iron and fatigue
Kidney cancer is among the 10 most common cancers.OR
There are four types of kidney cancer:
- Renal cell carcinoma: This makes up about one out of 10 kidney cancers.
- Urothelial carcinoma: This makes up about one to two out of 10 kidney cancers.
- Wilms tumor: This almost always appears in children.
- Renal sarcoma: This is very rare. It appears in one out 100 kidney cancers.
It depends on whether the cancer has spread and how much it’s spread. Many times, if it’s found early it can be cured.OR
You can lower your chances of getting of kidney cancer. Don’t smoke, keep your weight in a healthy range and eat plenty of fruit and vegetables.OR
The prostate is part of the male reproductive system. It’s about the size of a walnut and weighs about one ounce. The prostate helps make fluid to protect and nourish sperm.
Prostate cancer happens when prostate cells grow out of control.OR
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in American men. About one in nine American men will have prostate cancer in his lifetime.OR
There are two tests used to look for prostate cancer:
- Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test
- Digital rectal exam
Both tests are used to help find early signs of prostate cancer. Men between ages 55 and 69 should ask their doctor about getting tested.
Sometimes these tests find lumps or growths that aren’t cancer. They could be caused by benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or an infection.
To confirm that you have prostate cancer, you need to have a prostate biopsy. For a prostate biopsy, your doctor takes a tiny sample of the growth and looks at it under a microscope.
Growths in the prostate can be benign (harmless) or malignant (dangerous).
Benign (harmless) growths:
- Are rarely life-threatening
- Don’t invade the tissues around them
- Don’t spread to other parts of the body
- Can be removed. They can grow back slowly, but usually they do not grow back.
Malignant (dangerous) growths:
- May sometimes be life-threatening
- Can spread to nearby organs and tissues, such as the bladder or rectum
- Can spread to other parts of the body like lymph nodes or bones
- Often can be removed, but sometimes grow back
- Age. As you age, your chances of having prostate cancer goes up.
- Race. Black men have the highest rate of prostate cancer. One in six Black men will go on to have prostate cancer. They’re also more likely to get prostate cancer at an earlier age. Latino and Asian men are less likely to get prostate cancer.
- Family history. If your father, brother or son has prostate cancer, you are two to three times more likely to get it.
- Smoking. Heavy smokers have twice the chance of getting prostate cancer as nonsmokers. But if you quit smoking, your chances go down.
- Where you live. Prostate cancer numbers and deaths are higher in North America and Northern Europe.
- Lack of exercise
- Being overweight
It depends on your specific situation. Talk with your doctor to find the care that’s right for you.OR
The bladder is a balloon-shaped organ in your pelvis. It has a wall of muscle around it. This wall of muscle lets the bladder get larger or smaller to store urine (pee).
Bladder cancer happens when cancer cells grow in the tissues of the bladder. Bladder cancer is the sixth most common cancer in the United States.
There are two types of bladder cancer:
- Bladder cancer that doesn’t invade the wall of muscle
- Bladder cancer that invades muscle; this type is more serious
If you have bladder cancer, you may have:
- Blood in the urine
- Pain when you pee; or you may feel you need to pee often
- Pain in your abdomen or back
- Smoking. Smokers are three times more likely to get bladder cancer than people who don’t smoke.
- Exposure to chemicals, like those found in paints, dyes, metals or petroleum products.
- Drinking water with high levels of arsenic.
- Having a history of bladder infections.
To find bladder cancer, your doctor may:
- Do a physical exam to check for anything unusual.
- Check the vagina or rectum for lumps.
- Test your urine.
- Order a test to have your urine examined under a microscope to look for problems.
- Look for anything unusual inside your bladder and urethra (the tube that carries urine outside the body). This is done using a thin tube that has a light and lens for viewing.
It depends on how much the cancer has grown, as well as your age and general health. Talk with your urologist to find what’s right for you.OR
The testicles are two small egg-shaped glands in the scrotum below the penis. This is where sperm matures. The testicles also make male hormones, like testosterone.
Testicular cancer can affect a man or boy at any age. But it’s most likely to happen between the ages of 15 to 44.
To catch it early, learn the signs. They can include:
- A painless lump in the testicle. This is the most common sign.
- Swelling of the testicle, with or without pain. Or a feeling of weight in the scrotum.
- Pain or a dull ache in the testicle, scrotum or groin.
- Tenderness or changes in the male breast tissue.
The best way to find testicular cancer early is to check yourself weekly or monthly. The best time is right after a hot bath or shower. The skin of the scrotum will be relaxed, and you can feel your testicles more easily. Do the exam while you’re standing. It only takes a few minutes.
When you do the exam:
- Look for swelling in the scrotum or any changes in appearance.
- Gently feel the scrotal sac to find a testicle.
- Examine the testicles one at a time. Firmly and gently, roll each testicle between the thumb and fingers of both hands to feel the whole surface.
- Note that it’s normal for one testicle to be slightly larger than the other. It’s also normal to feel a cord-like structure on the top and back of each testicle. This is called the epididymis.
- If you find a lump, swelling or pain, get it checked right away. Changes are not always cancer. If it’s cancer, catching it early gives you a greater chance of cure.
When you catch testicular cancer early, the cure rate is nearly 100%. Even with more advanced stages of testicular cancer, more than three out of four patients can be cured.OR
Talk to a doctor if you think you have testicular cancer. Your doctor can help find a care plan that’s right for you.OR
Cancer of the penis is found on the foreskin or top of the penis. It tends to grow slowly.
Many men ignore it until it’s far along because they’re often reluctant or embarrassed to talk about it. They may also be afraid of surgery on the penis. However, if it’s caught early, it can often be cared for successfully.
Penile tumors can be caused by:
- Body fluids trapped in the foreskin. If these fluids aren’t washed away regularly, they can lead to cancer.
- An area of the skin that’s thicker or has changed color
- A lump on the penis
- A sore that might bleed
- A reddish, soft rash
- Small, crusty bumps
- Flat, blush-brown growths
- Smelly fluid under the foreskin
Care will vary based on your specific situation. Talk with your doctor to find what’s right for you.OR