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Da Vinci Prostatectomy Allowed Mark to Get Back To His Athletic Lifestyle!

Mark tells his story of a prostatectomy and traveling the road to recovery with the team at Urology Associates


Senior man on his mountain bike outdoors after bladder cancer treatment | Urology Associates | Denver, CO

I want to give shout out to Urology Associates on the great care I received on my recent Prostate Cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Here is my story and a bit of background about myself for context – I am 61 years old, and retired in 2018.  I am very active. I road cycle year round ~5000 miles a year with ~400,000 ft of climbing and do 2-3 weight and stretching workouts a week to maintain my core strength and flexibility.  Also, I am a hiker, back country skier and peak bagger. I have a replaced left hip (2017); right rotator cuff repair (2017 – cycling accident), scoliosis and L4 nerve compression (steroid injection treatment in 2017), AFIB (only one incident – cardioversion after a century ride in 2017), and a left ACL repair (1996). I am 5’ 8’’ and weigh 150 lbs.

My PSA score had risen from 2.5 to 5.0 over 24 months, so at the suggestion of my primary care doctor (Thank you Celinde Strohl!) I got a prostate biopsy. Biopsy  (12 samples) showed >50% cancer (Gleason 3+4) in all 6 samples on the left side, and >20% cancer (Gleason 4+3) in 1 sample in the center on the right side. Left side was a tumor, and its increasing size was creating some issues with urinating, both frequency and flow rate.

My wife and I had a consultation with Dr. Cowan after he did the biopsy. Dr. Cowan did a great job of laying out the treatment options, explaining the pros and cons, and patiently answering all of our questions. We felt no pressure to pick a specific treatment (surgery or radiation), and were encouraged to do some research and meet with both radiation specialists and surgeons. After that meeting, and some follow-up research (my wife and I are both scientists by training), we felt educated, informed, and empowered enough to make our own decision about the best treatment option

Choosing Da Vinci Surgery with Dr Eigner

My advice – do your homework on the treatment; take advantage of the information and consultations that are offered by Urology Associates, certainly not one size fits all. In my decision, the downside of radiation was the combined hormone therapy. I need the Testosterone for muscle recovery, and core strength / back health, based on a bad experience with induced testosterone deficiency while using Diclofenac (anti-inflammatory) for back issues.  After a very honest and informative discussion with Dr. Eigner (surgeon), we landed on the Da Vinci robot assisted laparoscopic surgery at Sky Ridge with Dr. Eigner and his team. Sky Ridge is a Center of Excellence for this type of surgery, which his what is recommended by the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

Very happy with the surgery and the result. Nerves on the right side were spared, cancer had escaped the prostate capsule on the left side, so Dr. Eigner removed those nerves. No cancer in surrounding lymph nodes or other tissue outside the prostate based on pathology. I just had my post-surgery (9 week) high resolution PSA test and it is down to 0.014 (very low score), which means that I don’t need any more treatment at this time, but will need periodic testing to ensure the cancer is not spreading.

If you have had surgery, you know that a lot of your treatment, pre-operative, and post-operative care is not only tied to your surgeon but to the larger medical team, both in the hospital and in the specialty practice. I continue to be very impressed with the PAs, nurses and staff at Urology Associates, and particularly Dr. Eigner’s team. My care at Sky Ridge was excellent. Liz Kelly answered my questions and gave me some good advice and tips prior to my discharge. Anna Willis has been a great advisor and coach in my overall recovery, and is very responsive to my questions, concerns, and suggestions.

My recovery has gone very well, and at 8 weeks, I am back to doing everything I was doing pre-surgery, including bike riding, weight lifting, and core exercises (though February weather has not been very outdoor cycling friendly). I am house cleaning with my wife again (no excuses), and gearing up for some spring home improvement projects!

Also, often after surgery, you never really see the surgery or specialty practice again. I can tell that Urology Associates is in it with me for the long haul on my recovery. From the start, it has felt like real partnership with a reciprocal commitment to my treatment. They are very honest and open about the ED issues that take awhile to work through after prostate surgery (nerve related) and have a treatment plan in place to help me monitor and improve this in my long-term recovery. They are surprisingly easy to talk to about post-operative ED and treatment options.

Weighing the Positives and Negatives of Surgery

Again encourage you to talk to the folks at Urology Associates and let them help you figure out the best cancer treatment option for you!

Pluses

  • Surgery seems to have gotten rid of the cancer, and unless there is some change in my PSA going forward, my treatment is done!
  • Surgery was minimally invasive, fast recovery with minimal side effects. Stopped wearing pads after 4 weeks (incontinence ended – except for stress events)
  • Was able to stay active and see real progress in recovery. Could exercise (walk) immediately, do pelvic floor / core rehab exercises after 2 weeks, do 50% effort weights, core and cardio workouts after 4 weeks, and bike riding (30 miles – 2 hours) after 6 weeks. After 8 weeks back to full effort on core, strength and cardio, and relatively normal bike riding (can’t be  100% sure due to winter weather restrictions).
  • Urination post surgery is amazing, I can empty my full bladder in <20 seconds, which prior to surgery was often a 2 minute long dribble fest.
  • I did not have to do the hormone therapy (associated with radiation) which based on my previous experience with drugs that suppressed my testosterone was not good for me with respect to building and maintaining strength in my back and cardiovascular fitness.
  • Most surprising, I can still have an orgasm (yes, I AM going to talk about this), even though I cannot yet have an erection. I spoke with Anna about this and did some reading and ejaculation, erection, and orgasm, while related are actually independent. Obviously, also requires a partner willing to try some different approaches to sexual intimacy. Reminding yourself and your partner that you were not killed by cancer sort of puts things in the right perspective!

Minuses

  • Surgery is well, surgery. You have to spend time in the hospital, you have to get general anesthesia and be intubated. There are risks of complications like bleeding and infections. You have to have a catheter for 10 days, and put up with the exercise restrictions, incontinence, and erectile dysfunction, which is a longer-term effect; however, considering the complexity of this surgery and all the detailed “re-plumbing and re-wiring” that gets done, the recovery is amazingly fast, and in my case, the results are outstanding!

Could not be happier with the quality of care I am receiving from Urology Associates!

 

– Mark S.

Seven Natural Ways to Prevent Kidney Stones

In some cases, a kidney stone diet may be enough to prevent stones from occurring and giving you kidney stone pain. While it is not complicated, it may take some dedication.

Senior man drinking water in the kitchen to prevent kidney stones | Urology Associates | Denver, CO
If you have ever had a kidney stone before, I am sure you remember the pain. According to the National Kidney Foundation 1 in 10 people will develop kidney stones in their lifetime. For most people, kidney stones are not a one-time occurrence and another will appear within seven years – without preventive measures.

Kidney stones form when certain chemicals become concentrated in the urine-forming crystals. Those crystals turn into stones that can make their way through the urinary tract. If they get stuck along the way they can block the flow of urine and cause unique kidney stone pain.

Learn more about kidney stones
The good news is that there are multiple natural ways to prevent kidney stones from occurring. In some cases, dietary changes may be enough to prevent stones from occurring again. But in other cases, additional medication or surgery may be needed.

If you have passed a stone before, it is helpful to get it tested to learn what type of stones you have and what prevention tips may work best for you.

Below are the seven most common kidney stone diet tips to stay stone free.

Staying hydrated helps prevent kidney stones

The number one natural way to prevent kidney stones is to drink more water. If you are not hydrated, you will not produce enough urine. This can increase the chances of kidney stones because low urine output means the urine is concentrated and less likely to dissolve urine salts that cause kidney stone.

I recommend that you drink around eight glasses of water each day. If you sweat a lot, exercise or have a history of stones, you may benefit from additional fluids.

A good way to tell if you are drinking enough water is to look at the color of your urine

Orange juice and lemonade are also good options to drink because they contain citrate, which prevents stones from forming.

Get enough calcium from a balanced diet

By increasing the amount of calcium-rich foods you eat, you may reduce your chance of the most common type of kidney stone, a calcium-oxalate stone. Good calcium-rich options include low-fat cheese, low-fat milk and low-fat yogurt.

If you already have an adequate calcium intake, this may not be helpful to reduce your chances of stones. The amount of calcium you need depends on your age and gender. Check with your primary care provider or urologist on what is right for you. Also, make sure you have vitamin D in your diet to help the body absorb the calcium.

While you may think it would be helpful, taking calcium supplements does the opposite and may increase the risk. If you need to take supplements, be sure to take them with a meal to try to reduce that increased possibility of stones.

Limit oxalate-rich foods

Oxalate is a natural compound found in food that binds with calcium in the urine and can lead to kidney stones forming. By limiting these types of foods, you can help prevent kidney stones from forming.

Oxalate and calcium bind together in the digestive tract before reaching the kidneys. If you would like to eat foods that contain oxalate or the mineral calcium, it is best to consume them at different times.

Foods to reduce or stay away from that are high in oxalates include:

  • Chocolate.
  • Coffee.
  • Spinach.
  • Sweet potatoes.
  • Rhubarb.
  • Peanuts.
  • Beets.
  • Wheat bran.
  • Almonds.
  • Soy products.

Reduce sodium intake

Sodium is a natural mineral found in some foods and also makes up 40% of table salt, with chloride making up 60%. We get most of our sodium from table salt. A person with a history of kidney stones should consume less sodium/salt, because the salt in urine does not allow the calcium to be reabsorbed into the blood. This can lead to urine with high levels of calcium, which may lead to stones.

For someone whose sodium consumption has contributed to their stones in the past, I recommend reducing your sodium intake to 1,500 mg each day (one teaspoon of salt contains 2,325 mg of sodium).

When trying to have a low-sodium diet, it’s important to read food labels. Foods that you should stay away from include:

  • Canned soups.
  • Canned vegetables.
  • Chips, crackers, pretzels and other processed foods.
  • Lunch meat.
  • Hotdogs, bratwurst and sausages.
  • Cheese.
  • Condiments.
  • Pickles and olives.
  • Foods that contain monosodium glutamate, sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and sodium nitrate.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a good guide on how to reduce sodium.

Eat less animal protein

Animal protein can be high in acidity and lead to increased urine acid. This can lead to both calcium-oxalate and uric-acid kidney stones.

Foods you should aim to limit or avoid are:

  • Poultry.
  • Beef.
  • Pork.
  • Fish.

Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables

I recommend that all people who form kidney stones should have at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily. This will help by providing fiber, potassium, magnesium, phytate, antioxidants and citrate, all of which can help keep stones from forming.

If you are worried about knowing how to eat the right amounts of fruits and vegetables, talk to your doctor about what will be best for you.

Don’t take vitamin C supplements

Vitamin C supplements, also known as ascorbic acid, have been linked to kidney stones especially in men. A 2013 study out of Sweden followed men for 11 years and found that those who took higher doses of vitamin C supplements doubled their risk of kidney stones.

Foods that are high in vitamin C do not seem to carry the same risk.

What to do when a kidney stones diet doesn’t work

Dietary choices may not be enough to stop kidney stones from forming for all people. If you have recurrent stones, we recommended you talk to your urologist about what role medication can play to prevent them in the future.

Each type of kidney stone has a different type of medication that can help reduce the amount of that material present in the urine causing the stone.

For example if you get calcium stones, a urologist may prescribe phosphate or thiazide diuretic. A person who gets uric acid stones may benefit from allopurinol (Zyloprim) to reduce the acid in the blood or urine. Those with struvite stones may be prescribed a long-term antibiotic to reduce the bacteria in the urine. Lastly, a doctor treating someone with cysteine stones may prescribe capoten (Captopril) to reduce the level of cysteine in the urine.

Some prescriptions or over-the-counter medications you are taking could lead to kidney stones. Those include:

  • Diuretics.
  • Decongestants.
  • Anticonvulsants.
  • Protease inhibitors.
  • Steroids.
  • Chemotherapy drugs.
  • Uricosuric drugs.

If you are taking any of the medications listed above, you should talk to your doctor about alternatives. Do not stop any medically prescribed medications without discussing it with your doctor first.

I do not recommend my patients use herbal remedies that are not well-researched or well-regulated for the prevention and treatment of kidney stones. It is best to head to a doctor to discuss your options.

Stones still forming

Even with medication and a proper diet a person may still get kidney stones. People may be able to pass smaller stones on their own. For other cases, medication such as tamsulosin (Flomax) may be prescribed to relax the ureter, making it easier to pass the stone. For large or painful stones, surgery may be needed to remove the stone from the ureter or kidney.

At Urology Associates we go over with each patient the risks of surgery and find the best option for those who need to have a stone surgically removed.

Changes in Bathroom Habits That Are Signs of Health Problems

Urologists and gynecologists, advises the importance of meeting with your primary care doctor if experiencing changes in bathroom habits. People often don’t pay attention to bathroom habits, but in some case experiencing changes in habits can indicate serious health concerns. Experiencing diarrhea, noticing new colors or smells, or frequent use of air freshener can be the first indication that there may be some issues with your body.

Abnormal urine color is a sign that cannot be ignored. The four most concerning colors are brown, red, pink and orange. Changes in the colors can be due to health problems, such as a liver condition, urinary infection, or kidney stones.

There are many medications and foods that could also cause these changes in color. But if you are experiencing an unhealthy looking color, make an appointment with your primary care doctor.

9 concerning bathroom habits

What Does Urine Color Say About Your Health?

Pay attention before you flush: know how to translate the message your urine color is sending you – especially if it is red, pink or brown.

A lab tech analyzing urine color in test tubes | Urology Associates | Denver, CO

It may be surprising for some to learn that urine can come in a spectrum of colors – and they can all mean different things. The changes in color could be caused by foods, medications or food dyes. But in other cases, these changes could be caused by a health problem you don’t want to ignore like a liver condition, urinary infection or kidney stones.

Urine is your body’s liquid waste. It is mostly made up of water but also includes salt and chemicals (urea and uric acid). In most situations, the color depends on how diluted the urochrome pigment is. This pigment is made when it breaks down hemoglobin.

The color is not the only telling feature. It is also important to pay attention to changes in consistency and frequency.

You should not be afraid to pee in a cup when asked to at your doctor’s office. It tells your doctor a lot about your body functioning and could be very beneficial for your health.

A urologist should not be the first doctor called when concerned about the color of your urine. Call your primary care provider to make an appointment.

The meaning behind urine color

We hope you will find this blog as a translator helping you learn what your trip to the bathroom is trying to tell you. Each color of urine can mean multiple things so we want to make sure you do not panic. But if you are experiencing an unhealthy looking color, make an appointment with your doctor.

Our color categories are approximate. Each person’s liquid waste will look slightly different than someone else’s, but this guide will provide you with a good frame of reference.

translucent urine | Urology Associates | Denver, CO

No color or transparent urine

Clear or transparent means you are drinking a lot of water. While it is rare to drink too much water, I recommend that if you see this shade, you cut back a bit. Cutting back your fluid intake will also reduce the number of trips to the bathroom.

 

 

Cloudy or foamy urine | Urology Associates | Denver, CO

Cloudy or foamy urine

Changes in the consistency of the liquid, including if it is cloudy or foamy, can be a sign of a urinary tract infection, an overabundance of certain minerals, a symptom of a chronic disease or sign of a kidney condition. If the discharge is cloudy with foam or bubbles, it could be a symptom of Chron’s disease or diverticulitis. In some cases, it is also a sign of dehydration. Another cause could be that you love steak and eat a lot of red meat or are on a ketogenic diet (high-fat and low-carb).

 

Pale yellow urine or gold urine | Urology Associates | Denver, CO

Pale yellow or gold urine

When everything is healthy and normal, your urine should be pale yellow to gold. It is helpful to regularly pay attention to your urination to see what your normal color is, so that you can tell when it is different.

 

 

Amber urine | Urology Associates | Denver, COAmber urine

Amber urined your bright yellow or neon liquid. Bright yellow urine is harmless, and is just a sign that you are taking more vitamins than your body needs. You may want to check with your doctor on what vitamins your body does not need as much of so you can cut back.

 

 

Bright Yellow urine | Urology Associates | Denver, COBright yellow urine

If your morning routine includes popping a handful of vitamins and supplements, this could be the culprit behind your bright yellow or neon liquid. Bright yellow urine is harmless, and is just a sign that you are taking more vitamins than your body needs. You may want to check with your doctor on what vitamins your body does not need as much of so you can cut back.

 

Brown urine color | Urology Associates | Denver, COBrown urine

Brown color in urination could mean you have severe dehydration or a liver condition. If you have melanoma skin cancer, your body may be adding skin pigment in circulation that’s winding up in the liquid waste. Brown urine could be misinterpreted as a very dark red, which could be caused by blood. Brown coloration could also be caused by large consumption of fava beans, aloe or rhubarb. Medications that cause your discharge to appear brown include metronidazole (treats infections) or chloroquine (prevent malaria).

Red color | Urology Associates | Denver, CORed and pink urine

Red or pink urine can range in a variety of colors. This may mean you have blood in your urine (hematuria) or it could be a sign of kidney disease, urinary tracts infection, tumors or a prostate problem. This could also be caused by recently eating blueberries, beets or rhubarb, or if you recently did strenuous activities.

 

Orange color | Urology Associates | Denver, COOrange urine

Orange urine may mean you are dehydrated and need water. It could also mean you could have a liver or bile duct condition. Another meaning could be you ate large amounts of carrots or carrot juice, or you ate something with food dye. Many medications can also turn the urine orange, including phenazopyridine (for urinary relief), sulfasalazine (anti-inflammatory drug), isoniazid (tuberculosis treatment), high doses of riboflavin, some laxatives and certain chemotherapy drugs.

Green and blue color discharge | Urology Associates | Denver, COBlue and green urine

A green or blue color in the urine is not very common. It could be caused by a rare genetic disease or a bacteria causing a urinary tract infection. But most likely it is caused by medication or food dye in something you ate (watch out for those green eggs and ham). The medications most known to turn your liquid discharge blue are the pain reliever indomethacin, the antidepressant amitriptyline, the stomach acid drug cimetidine, and the anesthetic propofol. Asparagus could also add a greenish tinge but it is more known for adding an odor.

 

Purple color liquid waste | Urology Associates | Denver, COPurple

Purple is the only color that has a syndrome named after it, purple urine bag syndrome. This occurs in rare cases when using a urinary catheter where the patient also has a co-existing urinary tract infection.

 
 

When to bring in the professionals for urine color

Sometimes changes to a person’s urine are temporary and harmless, such as the result of eating certain foods, taking medications or vitamins. But changes can also be a sign of a more serious underlying medical condition.

Anytime you see blood in your urine or notice it is brown or orange, it is time to seek medical attention and make an appointment with your primary care provider. This is especially true if the change lasts more than a day, or if it comes with back or side pain, fever, burning with urinating, vomiting, discharge or thirst.

Blood in the urine is a common sign of a urinary tract infection, kidney stones or urinary tract cancer. Brown or orange urine may be caused by a malfunctioning liver especially if it is partnered with pale stools and yellow eyes and skin.

Smelly urine

On top of your urine color, I also recommend paying attention to the smell while going to the bathroom. Changes in smell could be caused by a range of underlying conditions but also could be because of your latest meal. If diet is suspected (as is common with asparagus), try eliminating the culprit. Contact your primary care physician if the odor persists.

Here if you need us

A urologist does not need to be the first line of care for most urinary color problems. Make an appointment with your primary care provider, who will refer you to a specialist like the providers at Urology Associates if it is needed.

What to Know Before Getting a Vasectomy

Dr. Brad BellAsk Men logo for story on what men should know about a vasectomy | Urology Associates | Denver, along with other urologists, explained to AskMen what men should know before getting a vasectomy. Vasectomies are a readily available and very effective form of male birth control. The big question is, can vasectomies be the next long-term form of contraception for millennial guys who are looking to prevent having a child?

Before getting the treatment, there are many important facts to know. One area Dr. Bell talks about in this article is how long after surgery it takes to no longer have sperm in the semen.

“Just because you’ve had a vasectomy doesn’t mean that it’s immediately effective. It is important to confirm sterility after the vasectomy with a semen analysis that shows the vasectomy was successful,” says Dr. Bell.

7 things to know

Increasing Awareness of 2019 Vasectomy Giveaway

Logos from the Colorado Community Media placements on the vasectomy giveaway | Urology Associates | DenverAll 20 Colorado Community Media papers shared Urology Associates’ vasectomy giveaway to one man at the Lone Tree office. These articles were shared across the Denver metro area.

Men tell us that they time the procedure so they can recover on the couch and enjoy a few days of nonstop college basketball action, so we thought,why not help one man this season with a free procedure?”

They also report how the tournament can affect work

His Successful Prostatectomy Proves All Urologists Are Not Equal

Our patient wrote this story about his life-changing treatment for BPH and elevated PSA with us, after he lost confidence in his previous urologist.


Let me begin by saying that I had suffered with an enlarged prostate for about 20 years.

I was referred in 2012 to a urology practice by my primary care physician. After examining me, the urologist suggested that I have a prostate biopsy, which I refused. I was then prescribed medication to help with frequent urination and was advised to monitor any changes in PSA (prostate-specific antigen) levels along the way. This mode of treatment continued for a number of years with moderate relief.

Doctor getting ready for a prostatectomy | Urology Associates | Denver, CO

Eventually I wound up seeing the surgeon at that practice in February 2017 for a consult.

I was given his opinion, which was to have a robotic assisted laparoscopic simple adenomectomy (nodule removal) of the prostate for large volume BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia).

I remember afterwards saying to my wife that there was no way that I would elect to have the surgery described, due to a lack of confidence in the surgeon.

The surgeon stated the most significant benefit I would likely experience after the surgery would be somewhat lessened overall frequency of urination and fewer sleep interruptions.

Potential benefit as explained to me did not outweigh invasive surgical risk in my mind.

I said, at the time, that the procedure described would have to be on an emergency basis.

Fast forward to the ER

Well, fast forward to July of 2018. I went to the bathroom one night and was unable to urinate, wound up in the emergency room of my local hospital and was consequently catheterized. This was not good. I asked the doctor in charge if he had a recommendation for a urologist. He referred me to Dr. Brad Bell at Urology Associates, and I made an appointment with Dr. Horne, who is one of the founders of the practice.

I must say that from the initial visit with Dr. Horne I was very impressed. His bedside manner was excellent and the way he explained my options for fixing the problem, which was a simple prostetectomy, was clear and concise. [A prostatectomy is partial or complete removal of the prostate.] When he was done with the exam and subsequent explanation, I felt so confident that I wanted the surgery as soon as possible.

I was scheduled for a follow-up appointment with Dr. Bell and Jakob his physician assistant. I again was impressed with the way I was treated from the front desk to the consultation with Jakob. Dr. Bell was in surgery that day.

Put at ease before prostatectomy surgery

The initial surgery date of September 13 was cancelled due to a urinary tract infection. After taking medication to treat the infection, a surgery date was set for October 24.

I met Dr. Bell for the first time a few days before the surgery and was made to feel at ease and confident that all would be okay. And indeed it was.

Dr. Horne assisted with the procedure.

It is now January 2019 as I write this and my recovery, I am told, was faster than expected.

My overall experience at Urology Associates was excellent and one of the best decisions I have ever made. If I had to do it again, I would in a heartbeat.

Dr. Bell is an excellent surgeon, he genuinely cares for his patients and it shows. Jakob, his right-hand man, is integral to the functioning of the unit. I am so glad to have had the opportunity to meet and benefit from his care. Overall I could not have had a better experience under such dire circumstances.

I am now free from having to map out where bathrooms are prior to leaving my home.

I no longer get up every two hours during the night to pee.

I no longer take prescribed medication for overactive bladder.

I no longer worry about where I am seated in a crowded room or theatre.

Thanks again for all that you do at Urology Associates.

– Clifton B.

Protect Your Male Athletes from Genital Injuries & Testicular Pain

When should a boy or young man wear an athletic cup? Always when playing a sport that could cause a genital injury & testicular pain.

Football playing suffering from testicular pain | Urology Associates | DenverWe all have experienced a time when a boy or man was injured in the genital area during a sporting event and we hear the crowd gasp. This is because most men know how much pain it can cause. Even women have an idea from movies, TV shows and conversations with men in their life–and from the afflicted athlete holding the area and obviously suffering.

But it can trigger more than testicular pain, it can also cause a significant genital injury. This can include internal bleeding, severe bruises, fracture of a testicle and more. The most serious injuries are testicular rupture, when the testicle smashes against the pubic bone and bleeds internally, and testicular torsion, which cuts off the flow of blood and requires immediate medical care.

A new school year has begun and that means the start of football, soccer and wrestling, three sports that can cause genital injuries and testicular pain. But it is not just fall sports; lacrosse and baseball also account for a high number of testicular injuries. In fact, it may come as a surprise that the sports in order of the highest to lowest rate of testicular injury are lacrosse, wrestling, baseball and football.

While sports-related genital injuries are not very common, they can cause more than testicular pain including some significant injuries, especially if not treated. The ideal situation is to avoid testicular injuries to begin with. Genital injuries are seen in higher numbers in those who play a contact sport without the proper protective gear.

A Geisinger Health System 2016 study published in the Journal of Urology found that only 12.9 percent of athletes wore an athletic cup. That same study showed that 18 percent of athletes have experienced a testicular injury. There are more reported injuries than those who are trying to protect themselves. I am here to try to educate male athletes and their parents of the importance of the right protection and what can result from that genital injury.

Finding the right athletic cup to avoid possible testicular pain

An athletic cup should be worn if a male is involved with any kind of activity that can cause a groin injury, regardless of his age. The cup is made of metal or plastic and has padding on the inside. A cup should be worn as soon as a young athlete’s testicles and penis are big enough to fit in one. The cup might have holes in it for airflow.

Boys and men usually wear an athletic supporter, or jockstrap, to hold the cup in place. This will keep the testicles stationary and close to the body. Younger boys can order a smaller size cup than what stores might usually stock, and they can wear briefs instead of boxers to have a tighter fit.

In addition to holding a cup in place, wearing a jockstrap or compression shorts can help keep the testicles pressed against the body. While they are not as protective as a cup, they are better than no support for use in contact sports. They can also be used to prevent jostling around of the testicles in sports like running, basketball and skating. For contact sports, I always recommend taking the extra step of the full security of a cup.

Over the years, manufacturers of genital cups have made many improvements, and now there are many options that are cushioned making a cup more comfortable to wear. Many athletes don’t wear a protective cup because it is uncomfortable or because they feel it restricts their movement. But that’s not a good reason to refuse sensible protection.

Types of genital injuries in sports and treatments

Testicular injuries can be very serious and in worse case scenarios can result in the loss of a testicle if not treated correctly. The types of genital injuries that can occur in sports include:

  • Epididymitis – causing the epididymis, the tube that holds the sperm after leaving the testicles, to become inflamed or infected.
  • Hematoma – a blood clot that can cause bruising on the surface or within the testicle.
  • Scrotal or testicular contusion – injury in the blood vessels that causes internal bleeding in the respective area.
  • Testicular rupture – blood and other contents leak into the scrotum from the testicles after contact causes one or both to smash against the pubic bone.
  • Dislocation – pushing the testicle out of the scrotum.
  • Degloving – The scrotum is torn away.
  • Testicular torsion – at least one testicle gets twisted inside the scrotum, cutting off the flow of blood. This requires emergency treatment.

Treating testicular trauma

At home treatments for testicular trauma include icing the scrotum, resting, over-the-counter pain medication, and wearing supportive underwear. Surgery is needed at times especially in testicular torsion and dislocation cases.

But if your son experiences any of the following symptoms, it is time to visit a urologist:

  • Bruising.
  • Swelling.
  • Nausea.
  • Blood in the urine.
  • Fever.
  • Trouble urinating.

Some problems can cause serious complications. Seeing your doctor promptly can reduce the chances of serious complications. Some complications include the need for the testicle to be removed, the testicle shrinking or infertility.

Our urologists can handle these issues without referring to another provider if advance treatments are necessary.

Make an Appointment Now

Dr. Mazur Talked With Elite Daily About UTIs in Men After Sex

UTIs in men | Elite Daily | Urology AssociatedDr. Mazur explains to the readers of Elite Daily how urinary tract infections (UTIs) in men and women can develop. He answers the question: are UTIs in men something to be concerned about transmitting or contracting from sexual contact?

“Most UTIs occur from pathogenic bacteria entering the urethra and making their way to the bladder,” says Dr. Daniel Mazur. “Men have a significantly longer urethra, which may make it harder for bacteria to enter the bladder.”

Dr. Mazur went onto explain that a man can develop a UTI from having sex, but are much less likely to do so than women.

Read the Full Story: Male UTIs

Urology Associates Welcomes Dr. Daniel Mazur

Mazur brings a unique expertise to Colorado with a focus on men’s sexual health and male infertility.

Dr. Daniel Mazur | Urology Associates | Denver Metro
Dr. Daniel Mazur joins Urology Associates.

(DENVER) August, 6, 2018­­— Urology Associates, a Denver-based general and surgical urology practice, is pleased to welcome Daniel Mazur, M.D., as the newest member of the growing practice.

“Men’s sexual health is often an overlooked condition that can and should be addressed. It can lead to low self-esteem, anxiety and relationship problems,” said Mazur.  “I decided to specialize in men’s sexual health and infertility to help men and their families.”

Dr. Mazur will focus on male infertility and sexual health but will also be available for general urological services. He can treat male infertility when the cause is a varicocele or blockage, and can perform a vasectomy reversal, surgically repair blockages, retrieve sperm, or provide hormonal treatments to increase sperm count or sexual function.

“We are so excited to expand our male sexual health services with Dr. Mazur’s expertise,” said Stanley Galansky, M.D., founding partner of Urology Associates. “He will be a great resource for the men in our community.”

Dr. Mazur completed his medical degree and residency at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. He completed his fellowship in male reproductive medicine and surgery at Baylor College of Medicine with one of the world’s experts in male infertility, vasectomy reversal, erectile dysfunction and testosterone therapy.

About Urology Associates

Urology Associates has provided general and surgical urology services for children, women and men in the Denver metro area for nearly four decades. Doctors and staff at the Lone Tree, Englewood and Littleton locations work as a team to provide personal, family-centered care, with providers devoted to getting patients back to health and their lifestyles. For more information, visit the Urology Associates website.