Despite it's limited scope, urology has often been at the forefront of surgical procedures. As such, most urological surgical procedures are now minimally invasive and have been been adopted by other surgical specialties.
Urology is one of the most selective medical specialties, with only about 1.5% of physicians qualifying for a residency in the field. Becoming board certified requires a 12 month residency in general surgery followed by a 36 month course in clinical practice and a further 12 months in mixed practice. Many urologists then go on to a fellowship in a sub-specialty that can last another 36 months.
The recognized sub-specialties are:
- Endourology - the surgical treatment of conditions without breaking any tissues, generally by inserting instruments through the uethra
- Urologic oncology - treatment of cancer of the kidneys, adrenal glands and other structures of the urinary tract
- Neurorology - treatment of conditions affecting the nerves that control functions of the urinary tract
- Pediatric urology - treatment of urinary tract conditions in children
- Andrology - treatment of conditions specific to the male reproductive tract
- Reconstructive urology - specializing in surgery to reconstruct the structures of the urinary tract
- Female urology - focussing on conditions that affect the bladder and associated systems.