Urological Health In Men
Dr. Kwatra is a highly experienced and board-certified urologist who has served the Conroe and The Woodlands communities for over 20 years. He earned his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and completed his urology residency at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston. Before his medical career, Dr. Kwatra worked as an engineer and obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Rice University. He is a proud member of the American Urologic Association, Texas Medical Association, and Montgomery County Medical Society. He has affiliations with Emergency Hospital Systems and other prominent organizations in the area.
Dr Kwatra can be reached at: (936) 441-1005
As we observe Men’s Health Month this June, it’s important to encourage men of all ages to prioritize their physical and mental well-being by making healthy lifestyle choices. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), men are less likely than women to visit a doctor with women being more likely to see their doctors for regular preventive care. In this edition, we speak with Dr. Ajay Kwatra about men’s urological health, a topic that becomes increasingly relevant as men age.
1. Men’s Health Month aims to raise awareness about the importance of preventive care. What advice do you have for men hesitant or apprehensive about seeking medical attention for urological issues?
That is a difficult question. Usually, men tend to be less inclined to see a doctor regularly and have yearly checkupsthan women. Unfortunately, if a man has a urological condition and delays seeking medical attention, the condition is unlikely to reverse and may even worsen. Some men have been experiencing urination problems for years and may wake up frequently at night to urinate. If left untreated, the problem won’t resolve on its own. However, if we identify the problem early, there’s a higher likelihood of achieving a positive health outcome and reversing the problem.
2. Can you provide information about common urological health issues that affect men and their impact on overall well-being?
In my experience, the most common issues include frequent nighttime urination, prostate problems, erection difficulties, and kidney issues. Prostate problems can significantly impact men’s overall well-being as they may need to wake up four or five times a night to urinate. Erection problems can also have a significant impact on some men’s lives, while others may be less affected. Additionally, kidney problems can also have a significant impact on overall health.
3. In your experience, what are the key risk factors for developing urological conditions in men, and what preventive measures can be taken?
Lifestyle habits can have a significant impact on your urological health. Unhealthy eating habits, lack of exercise, and smoking are all risk factors for developing urological conditions. For example, in Japan, low-fat diets have been proven effective in reducing prostate cancer. Smoking, on the other hand, can negatively affect your heart health and blood vessels, including those around the penis, leading to erectile dysfunction. To maintain good urological health, it is recommended to do certain lifestyle changes, such as quitting smoking, adopting a healthy diet, and engaging in regular exercise.
4. Prostate health is a significant concern for men. What are some important aspects of prostate health that men should be aware of? Are there any specific screenings or tests they should consider?
It’s quite common for men to face prostate problems, and early detection of cancer is key. Therefore, it’s crucial to undergo an annual checkup. During the visit, we conduct an examination and perform tests using the machines available in our office. The screening tests include the PSA screening and a rectal exam. If we detect any prostate issue, we start with medication to treat it. If the condition doesn’t improve, we may consider surgery as a solution.
5. How common is prostate cancer, and how to prevent it?
Prostate cancer is very common, it is considered the second leading cause of cancer in men after lung cancer. The detection of cancer typically involves a PSA test and a rectal examination. The PSA, which is a blood test and stands for Prostate Specific Antigen test, can be helpful in identifying prostate cancer, but it is not always 100% accurate. For instance, a low PSA doesn’t necessarily mean that the patient does not have cancer, and vice versa. However, it is a cheap and easy-toperform test that can be very useful. It is unusual for a patient to have symptoms of prostate cancer, so the best way to prevent the disease is to visit a doctor once a year. Patients don’t have to visit a urologist for a checkup. Primary Care Doctors can do it.
6. How does age impact urological health? Are there specific concerns or conditions that become more prevalent as men grow older?
As men age, their urological health can be affected, with specific conditions becoming more prevalent. The tendency to develop prostate cancer, kidney cancer, bladder cancer, urinary incontinence, recurring infections, and erectile dysfunction increases. Additionally, the prostate tends to enlarge with age, increasing the risk of prostate problems.
7. Testicular cancer is another crucial topic. What signs and symptoms should men watch out for, and at what age should they start performing self-examinations?
Typically, testicular cancer is more common among younger men in their 20s and 30s and relatively rare in older men. Usually, testicular cancer does not show any symptoms. The primary indicator is the presence of a lump or hard spot. Therefore, if the patient detects any of these signs, it’s time to get an ultrasound to detect if there is any potential for testicular cancer.