Facing a genitourinary (GU) condition or a cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming. We’re here to help. Our Genitourinary Oncology Program provides expert, integrated care for patients with these cancers.
Benign genitourinary conditions
There are many types of benign genitourinary (GU) conditions and types of GU cancer. The Genitourinary Oncology Program offers a range of treatments. You and your doctor will discuss the best course of treatment for your condition, what you can expect for results, and what you may experience as side effects.Your physician or nurse practitioner will discuss therapy for any benign GU condition you may have. This may involve observation, surgery, antibiotics or reassurance.
Learn more in this section about the different types of GU cancer, the tests that may be used and the treatments we offer.
Understanding more about your condition and the different types of genitourinary cancers can help you feel more prepared to talk with your doctor. We welcome your questions and encourage you to bring a list of what you’d like to know to your appointment.
If you have a condition or symptom but don’t yet know the cause, your doctor may order tests to gather more information. Common tests include biopsy and state-of-the-art imaging. Once your tests are complete, you and your doctor will discuss the results, confirm your diagnosis and decide on next steps. You may have one or more of these tests to help your doctor confirm diagnosis.
The Genitourinary Oncology Program offers a range of treatments. You and your doctor will discuss the best course of treatment for your condition, what you can expect for results, and what you may experience as side effects. Treatment options for most GU cancers include a combination of surgery, radiation or chemotherapy. Other forms of treatment may be available depending on the form of GU cancer you have.
- Surgery - Many individuals with GU cancer will undergo surgery. Your doctor will discuss options with you based on your diagnosis. Our surgeons will work with you to help you make the best decision for yourself.
- Radiation therapy - Radiation therapy uses radiation to kill cancer cells. It can be effective in destroying the DNA of the cancer cells and preventing the return of cancer. Many individuals with GU cancers will receive a recommendation to undergo radiation therapy either before or after surgery. Our radiation oncologists are experienced in advanced radiation treatments for GU cancer and will plan your treatment schedule and follow your progress. Radiation is typically given once a day (5 days a week) for 4-6 weeks.
- Chemotherapy - Chemotherapy uses anti-cancer drugs given intravenously to kill cancer cells that may be in your blood stream. Chemotherapy is sometimes used after surgery to reduce the chance of cancer returning in organs other than the primary site. Our medical oncologists will meet with you to discuss your treatment options and potential side effects, and will follow you and your progress throughout treatment. Whenever possible, we coordinate treatment through outreach centers closest to your home so you can minimize your travel during therapy.