The red flags of urological health: what to watch out for

31 May 2019, Travis Simons - 

Our bodies tend to give us signs when something isn’t working properly. For many of us, it is easy to dismiss symptoms as nothing more than irregular yet perfectly normal occurrences of body processes. This shouldn’t always be the case, however, and we want to make sure that you know the red flags of potential urological health issues.

The common culprits of these symptoms

Before diving into the warning signs of urological symptoms, it is best to know some of the diseases and conditions that cause them.

  • Kidney Stones: a condition in which the kidneys produce crystallized stone-like lumps that travel through the ureters (tube that connects your kidneys to your bladder)
  • Urinary Tract Infection (UTI): Infection of the urinary tract (whether it be the kidneys, ureter, bladder, prostate, or urethra) caused by bacteria
  • Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH): Commonly known as prostate enlargement, is the irregular enlargement or swelling of the prostate gland found in men
  • Interstitial Cystitis (IC): is a disease that causes pain to the bladder and pelvic region
  • Bladder/Kidney/Prostate/Testicular Cancer: Cancer that results in the growth of a tumour in the affected area

Pay attention to the symptoms

The following are red flags that may indicate the possibility of a urological disease.

Pee blockage or pain when peeing

Generally associated with kidney stones. Kidney stones can block the ureter tubes, which stops the kidneys from delivering pee to the bladder and causes pain when peeing due to the blockage and size of the stone trying to be passed. Pain when peeing can also be a sign of a number of other health conditions, including having a UTI or even bladder cancer.

Blood in urine

Medically known as hematuria, this is a common symptom of urological health conditions that can be caused by a UTI, kidney stones, or cancer of the prostate, bladder or kidneys.

Frequent and intense need to pee

A common symptom to be aware of. If you have a greater sensation for the need to pee or find yourself needing to peeing more often, this could be due to a number of possible urinary issues. This could be due to kidney stones, UTI’s, BPH, IC, and potentially prostate cancer

Burning feeling when peeing

Generally a symptom of a lower UTI or bladder cancer.

The inability to empty or control the bladder

Lack of control of the bladder can be a tell-tale sign of BPH or prostate cancer. Prostate enlargement can place pressure on the bladder and urethra, affecting urination. Prostate cancer, although less likely, is a possible reason for this.

Pressure or pain in the pelvic region

While this is an obvious pointer to IC, this can also be attributed to more advanced stage forms of cancer. Assuming it was, it might have been joined by other prior symptoms.

There are certain areas of urological health that have their own symptoms more or less directly related to a specific condition or disease. Those are the following.

Erectile Dysfunction

Men should watch for a lack of the ability to get and keep an erection. Although fairly common among older age groups, ED is still an issue that should be treated at any age.

Testicular Cancer

Because testicular cancer results in the formation of tumour growth in the testicles, this can be easily checked by any man alone. Signs of this disease include any changes in shape or size of the testicles or the formation of any lumps that can be felt; this can be checked routinely on a monthly basis to determine changes.


The symptoms above are common in these conditions, and could become more severe or lead to other symptoms if medical care is not sought. Sometimes these red flags are false alarms, but it is always a good idea to visit your GP if you have any concerns.

To learn more about these key urology diseases or to learn about other urology diseases, visit our Urology Health pages.

Be aware that the above symptoms could also relate to a number of other urological and non-urological conditions. Regardless of this, make sure you see your GP if you come across them.


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