Your Guide to Preparing for a Male Urology Exam
For men, making the decision to visit a urologist is an important step in their overall health journey. An annual checkup with a urologist can help not only identify, but also treat several key issues that affect long-term urinary health. But, once you’ve scheduled your urology appointment, what should you be doing in the meantime?
Preparing for a male urology exam may feel overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be! Whether it’s your first urology appointment or not, there are a variety of ways you can prepare for your upcoming exam to ensure you’re as comfortable as possible during the entire process.
Keep reading to learn more about what to do before your appointment, as well as what to expect during your exam.
5 Steps to Prepare for Your Urology Appointment
1. Contact your insurance company and primary care provider
First, contact your insurance company to make sure our services are covered in your plan and to see if you need a referral. If you do need a referral, then make sure you obtain it prior to your appointment. Once you have contacted your insurance company, you should also reach out to your primary care provider for any relevant test results, such as blood tests or urine samples. Your primary care provider can either forward this information to your urologist, or you can bring it with you when you go to your appointment.
2. Make a list of any current medications
Once you get to your male urology exam, there’s a good chance your urologist will ask you what medications you’re currently taking. Because it can be easy to forget when you’re asked to name them on the spot, we recommend preparing a list beforehand. This list should include the dosage of these medications, as well as any supplements or vitamins you are taking.
3. Write out detailed notes about your symptoms
You may only be going to the urologist for a regular checkup — and that’s okay! However, if you made the appointment because you are experiencing specific symptoms, it is important to make a note of what these symptoms entail. Write down the severity of your symptoms, where they’re located, and approximately when the symptoms began. Try to be as specific as possible to help your urologist give you the most accurate diagnosis.
4. Prepare a list of questions to ask your urologist
As your male urology exam approaches, you’re bound to think of questions you want to ask your urologist. Write down any questions you think of in the meantime, so you don’t forget them once it’s time for your appointment. These questions can be as general or as specific as you prefer.
Questions to consider asking your urologist include:
- What might be causing my symptoms?
- Can we discuss the results of my testing in detail?
- Is my current medication list acceptable for my symptoms and diagnosis?
- What treatment options are available?
- What next steps do you recommend?
- Do I need to be screened for prostate cancer?
- Is there anything I can do at home to relieve my symptoms?
- Should I be making any changes to my daily diet?
5. Gather everything you need to bring
As you’re preparing for your male urology exam, the last step we recommend is to gather the following items and set them aside beforehand. You’ll likely need these items during your appointment, and you don’t want to risk forgetting them.
Here’s what you’ll need to bring to your male urology exam:
- Your insurance card and a referral number
- Your photo ID
- Results of any testing completed by your PCP
- Your list of current medications
- Detailed notes about your symptoms
- A list of questions for your urologist
- A list of daily beverage and food intake
What to Expect During Your Male Urology Exam
Now that you know how to prepare for your upcoming appointment, you may be wondering what to expect upon arrival. Here are some of the typical things you can expect during a male urology exam.
1. Check-in and complete the necessary paperwork
As is the case with any other medical appointment, be prepared to fill out paperwork once you arrive. This typically includes information about yourself and your medical history, as well as questionnaires about your specific symptoms. As you fill out this paperwork, it is important for you to provide as much detail as possible. This information will help your urologist learn more about your current urinary health and your medical history.
2. You’ll be asked to provide a urine sample
At the beginning of your exam, it is typical for your urologist to request a urine sample for a urinalysis. Therefore, we suggest hydrating beforehand to ensure you come to your appointment with a full bladder. If bladder control is difficult for you, then ask the front desk to conduct your urine sample as soon as you arrive. They will be more than willing to work with you to make sure you’re as comfortable as possible.
Related: What Your Urologist Can Tell About You From a Urinalysis
3. A staff member will record your detailed medical history
Once you enter the exam room, a staff member will record your detailed medical history. During this part of your appointment, be prepared to provide your list of medications and any information from your primary care provider that we mentioned earlier. This information will help your urologist have a complete overview of your health before proceeding with the physical exam.
4. Your urologist will perform a physical exam
When you sit down with your urologist, they will first discuss your symptoms, medical history, and urine sample results. Afterwards, they will perform a physical exam to examine your urinary tract and reproductive system. For men with prostate issues, it is standard protocol to perform both a genital exam and digital rectal exam. Other tests may include a urethral swab to rule out any sexually transmitted diseases, or blood work to check your Prostate-Specific Antigen levels.
5. Your urologist will discuss a treatment plan
After the physical exam, your urologist will give you an official diagnosis and discuss a treatment plan with you. Whether your treatment includes at-home exercises, medication, or a procedure, you and your urologist will work together to create a plan for potential next steps. If necessary, your urologist may also recommend additional testing or imaging studies. Remember that your urologist’s goal is to do whatever they can to improve your urology health, so don’t be afraid to ask any questions or voice any concerns you might have before leaving your appointment.
Learn More: What Does a Urologist Treat?
Your Upcoming Appointment with USOC
Have an upcoming appointment with us? Download our step-by-step checklist to learn what to do before, during, and after your urology appointment. This helpful guide was designed to be your go-to resource for any appointment you may schedule with one of our urology specialists, so you know exactly what to expect. Click the button below to access your free copy!