Bringing Hope to Patients with Urologic Conditions 

UM FPI Urology services diagnose and treat urological conditions in both men and women. Rena Deep Malik, MD, explains innovative and non-invasive techniques for patients in need of traditional and advanced treatments for all urinary tract disorders. 

What are the most common urological conditions affected men and women?

The most common conditions affecting both men and women are kidney stones, followed by prostate gland enlargement for men and urinary incontinence for women. We also often see patients for prostate, bladder and kidney cancer.

How can people avoid developing these conditions?

Kidney stones can be avoided by drinking up to two or three liters of water a day, limiting salt and avoiding too much protein.  

For urinary incontinence, people can practice good bladder health by not waiting too long to go to the bathroom. Managing a healthy weight and quitting smoking can also help. You'll want to keep track of how caffeine, alcohol, spicy foods, acidic foods and artificial sweeteners affect your bladder. It’s important to avoid what makes your symptoms worse and increases urinary frequency, urgency or urinary incontinence.

Which urologic conditions are hardest or most challenging to treat?

The most challenging condition to treat is recurrent urinary tract infections. Surgery does not always correct this, and it becomes a chronic condition that greatly affects daily activities.

How important is it to seek treatment?

You definitely want to seek treatment for urologic conditions. Symptoms of urinary incontinence, including urgency, frequency or feeling like you can't empty your bladder, should not be ignored.

If you feel like you may be developing one of these conditions, contact a urologist to see what type of treatment is available. Minor lifestyle changes or minor surgical procedures can make a difference in your condition. We can help you get your life back and resume the activities you enjoyed before developing bladder problems.

How has University of Maryland responded to the need for more research and treatment for these patients?

As part of an academic medical center, my colleagues and I have access to innovative clinical trials that offer promising new treatments for patients with urologic conditions, often years before these treatments are available commercially. University of Maryland also is a major center for robotic surgery, a minimally invasive approach that result in less risk of infection and a faster recovery.

What's your best advice for patients struggling with a urological condition?

It can be extremely challenging for patients to cope with some of these conditions that can cause dramatic impacts on their social, mental, physical and sexual health. It's important to find a urologist you feel comfortable with and who listens to your concerns, as well as helps you reach your health goals.