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Los Angeles Urology Specialists

The renowned specialists of USC and miVIP provide the finest urologic care

Partnered with physicians at the University of Southern California, miVIP Surgery Centers offer outstanding care for patients undergoing treatment for urologic conditions. miVIP Surgery Centers were the first and are still the only outpatient surgery center in the United States offering radical prostatectomy after which patients can return home the same day without a catheter. Our miVIP urology specialists are thoroughly trained and have extensive experienced with a full range of minimally invasive urological treatments, which helps achieve the most successful outcomes and fastest recovery times possible.

The human urinary system is composed of:

  • Kidneys
  • Ureters
  • Bladder
  • Urethra
  • Reproductive organs

The crucial parts of the system are the kidneys, which are two fist-sized organs below the ribs toward the middle of the back. The kidneys remove excess liquid and wastes from blood and removes it from the body as urine. The kidneys maintain a stable balance of salts and other substances in the blood, and produce a hormone that helps create red blood cells. Narrow tubes (ureters) carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder, which is a sack-like organ that sits in the lower abdomen. The bladder stores urine, which is emptied via a narrow canal called the urethra.

Among the common non-robotic urological procedures performed by miVIP surgeons are the following:

  • Cystoscopy to examine the interior lining of the bladder and urethra with a tiny scope.
  • Ureteroscopy to examine the ureter with a scope, usually to locate and remove a kidney stone.
  • Stent Replacement of a mesh tube inserted into the ureter to allow passage of a kidney stone or into the urethra to allow passage of urine.
  • Prostate Biopsies to remove tiny samples of prostate tissue to examine for cancerous cells.
  • Sling Procedures to insert a mesh sling that supports and/or compresses parts of the urinary system to treat urinary incontinence.

Conditions

A vast range of conditions can affect the urologic system, including:

  • Bladder cancer, the ninth most common cancer worldwide with about 350,000 new cases each year.
  • Prostate cancer, the most common non-skin cancer in males, which is responsible for more deaths than any other cancer except for lung cancer.

Symptoms

Symptoms can vary greatly when different parts of the urinary system are not functioning properly. Symptoms can range from mild to moderate or severe, although in certain cases, there may be no symptoms of a condition. Some of the typical symptoms of a urologic condition include:

  • Blood in urine
  • Blood in semen
  • Lump in the abdomen
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Unexplained loss of appetite
  • Pain in the side
  • Pain in the lower back
  • Changes in urination (inability, frequency, pain, output, incontinence)
  • Needing to urinate without results
  • Sensation that the bladder is not empty after urinating
  • Trouble starting or holding back urination
  • Weak flow
  • Interrupted flow

Treatment Options

Treatment options depend on the urologic condition and its stage, but may include:

  • Traditional Open surgery, which is the standard, common approach, uses large incisions to access the pelvic organs. Drawbacks include significant after-surgery pain, long recovery, and unpredictable and potentially long-term effects on continence and sexual function.
  • Minimally invasive surgery was achieved when robotics was applied to surgical technology in the late 1990s. At the forefront of this minimally invasive revolution is the da Vinci® Surgical System, which is being used by increasing numbers of surgeons worldwide for prostatectomies and other complex and delicate urologic procedures.
  • Radiation therapy for localized prostate cancer and is an alternative to surgery, either performed using external beam radiation or radioactive seed implants (brachytherapy).
  • Cryosurgery freezes and kills prostate cancer cells using liquid nitrogen. Ultrasound guided, the doctor precisely places needles in pre-selected sites in the prostate gland.
  • Watchful waiting or active surveillance is based on the finding that some localized prostate cancers advance so slowly that they are unlikely to cause men, especially older men, any problems during their lifetimes.
  • Hormonal therapy (androgen deprivation therapy) can be used with other treatments or alone as a primary treatment. Hormone therapy seeks to halt or slow the growth of prostate cancer, and is often used in advanced cases.

If you would like more information about the minimally invasive robotic treatment of urological conditions offered by miVIP Surgery Centers, please call 888-996-4847 or click on our Contact Us form.

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