Urologists (also known as urological surgeons) treat problems of the female urinary system and the male genitourinary tract. They diagnose and treat disorders of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, prostate and male reproductive organs.

This page provides useful information on the nature of the work, the common procedures/interventions, sub-specialties and other roles that may interest you.

surgical instruments

Nature of the work

Urologists are surgeons, but much of their work also involves the medical management of conditions or disease without surgery. They work with patients of all ages from babies and children to elderly people.

Conditions treated include disorders of the:

Urology was the first surgical specialty to use minimally invasive techniques such as endoscopy and key-hole surgery, techniques which continue to be regularly used by urologists. Urology is also at the forefront of developments in robot-assisted surgery.

Urologists use a thin lighted instrument known as a cystoscope to examine the bladder and urethra. Other conditions can also be treated using endoscopic (telescopic) procedures including the removal of bladder tumours and treatment of bladder and kidney stones.

Urological conditions are relatively common and account for up to 10% of all GP consultations and up to 20% of all acute hospital referrals.

Most urological surgery is elective and urological emergencies are relatively rare. But dealing with acute kidney infections, urinary retention and trauma to the urinary tract can also occasionally be part of a day’s work.

“I love the physical and technical challenges of operating on the human body”. Vaibhav Modgil, Specialist trainee in urology, Good Hope Hospital, Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust. 

Read Vaibhav’s story

Common procedures/interventions

Common open surgery procedures include:


The main sub-specialties include:

It is also possible to specialise in paediatric urology.

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Other roles that may interest you

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