Here you will find all the medical terms used on this website and their explanation. You can also download the print-friendly version of the glossary from the library.

Abdominal cavity

The space in the body that contains all the abdominal organs (including bladder, kidneys, urinary tract, genital structures)

Abdominal wall

The muscle and tissue that surrounds the abdominal cavity

Ablation therapy

A type of minimally-invasive procedure to remove abnormal tissue. The doctor destroys the abnormal tissue using heat (radiofrequency ablation) or extreme cold (cryoablation).

Active surveillance

A treatment plan that involves closely watching a patient’s condition but not giving any treatment unless there are changes in test results that show the condition is getting worse. Active surveillance may be used to avoid or delay the need for treatments such as radiation therapy or surgery, which can cause side effects or other problems. During active surveillance, certain exams and tests are done on a regular schedule.

Active treatment

Procedures to remove a kidney or ureteral stone.

Acute renal colic

Renal colic is a type of pain caused by kidney stones. Kidney stones (urolithiasis) are crystals that form from chemicals in the urine. Usually, a stone develops because too much of a single chemical is present in the urine.


A type of cancer that starts in and has features of glandular cells


The enlarged part of the prostate.

Adjuvant therapy

A therapy that is given after surgery or radiotherapy (for example, chemotherapy)

Adrenal gland

The adrenal glands are organs that sit at the top of the kidneys. They are responsible for releasing hormones.


The surgical procedure in which the adrenal gland is removed.

Adrenolytic agents

A group of drugs that reduces or stops the production of the hormone adrenaline.

Advanced cancer

A tumour that grows into deeper layers of tissue, adjacent organs, or surrounding muscles.


Adhesions of the foreskin to the glans that tend to resolve spontaneously.


A disease that occurs when a substance called amyloid builds up in your organs. Amyloid is an abnormal protein that is usually produced in your bone marrow and can be deposited in any tissue or organ.


A lowered level of red blood cells. It is the most common disorder of the blood. It causes fatigue, weakness and poor concentration, among others.

Anaesthesia (general, spinal, or local)

Before a procedure you will get medication to make sure that you don’t feel pain. Under general anaesthesia you are unconscious and unaware of what is happening to you. Under spinal or local anaesthesia you will not feel pain in the part of your body where the procedure is done. Anaesthesia wears off gradually after the procedure.


Group of steroid hormones, represented mainly by testosterone

Androgen Deprivation Therapy (ADT)

A therapy in prostate cancer, with the aim to stop or slow down tumor growth. Prostate cancer cells usually require androgen hormones, such as testosterone, to grow. ADT reduces the levels of androgen hormones, with drugs or surgery, to prevent the prostate cancer cells from growing


Male sex hormones that control and provide male characteristics like facial hair and lower voice.


The medical specialist that deals with male health, particularly relating to the problems of the male reproductive system and urological problems that are unique to men.

Anti-androgen drug

Any drug that blocks the action of androgens.

Antiangiogenic therapy

Therapy with drugs which prevent the formation of new blood vessels that feed a tumour and allow it to grow.

Artery embolisation

Temporary block of the vessels supplying blood to the penis.


The process of drawing a substance (eg, blood) from the body.


Any condition which does not cause symptoms and is discovered incidentally.

Asymptomatic stones

Stones that do not cause any symptoms. They are usually found during imaging tests done for another condition.

Benign enlargement

Cell growth in the body which is not cancerous.

Benign Prostatic Enlargement (BPE)

An enlargement of the prostate related to hormonal changes with age.

Benign tumour

A non-cancerous growth which will not spread to other organs.

Bimanual examination

An examination of the abdomen or pelvis performed with both hands.


A measurable indicator of a certain biological state or condition.


A medical procedure in which a small piece of tissue is removed from the body to examine it. This is done to get information for diagnosing, monitoring, and treatment.


Organ which collects urine from the kidneys.

Bladder neck

The group of muscles that connect the bladder to the urethra. These muscles contract to keep the urine in the bladder, and relax to let the urine pass to the urethra.

Bladder wall

The different layers of tissue that shape the bladder.

Bone scan

A scan of the entire body that can be used to find bone metastases.


A surgically created opening for the urethra in the perineum.


Sometimes called seed implantation. Radioactive “seeds” are carefully placed inside of the cancerous tissue and positioned to attack the cancer most efficiently.

Buried penis

The penis is not visible or is inside the skin.




Abnormal cell growth in the skin or organ tissue


A cancer that arises from lining cells (epithelia)

Carcinoma in situ (CIS)

A type of squamous cell cancer that affects only the cells in the skin and has not grown any deeper.


A doctor who specializes in cardiovascular diseases.


Relating to the circulatory system, which comprises the heart and blood vessels and carries nutrients and oxygen to the tissues of the body and removes carbon dioxide and other wastes from them.

Cardiovascular disease

A disease involving the heart and the blood vessels.


A chemical or surgical treatment in which the production of androgens is stopped, or the effect of the hormones is blocked.

Castration-resistant prostate cancer

A type of prostate cancer that needs lower levels of androgens to continue to grow.


A hollow flexible tube to insert or drain fluids from the body. In urology, catheters are generally used to drain urine from the bladder.

Cell morphology

The shape, structure, form, and size of cells

Chemical castration

A type of treatment in which drugs are used to stop the production of androgens, or block their effect.


Is a treatment of cancer with drugs that are toxic to cells. Some are specifically toxic to cells that grow faster than normal, like cancer cells.

Chronic infection

An infection that lasts over a long period of time.


Surgical removal of the foreskin of the penis

Clear cell renal cell carcinoma

A type of kidney tumour with a high content of fat.

Clinical trial

These are experimental research studies designed to answer specific questions about treatments or drugs. They generally test how well a treatment works among patients with specific characteristics.


Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body. It helps connective tissue to be strong and provides cushioning for various parts of the body.


A condition existing before birth that is due to different causes.

Conservative management

A type of treatment in which the doctor monitors your health and can recommend treatment if necessary.

Conservative treatment

Monitoring the progress of the stone disease or treatment with medication to ease the natural passing of stones.


Any symptoms or conditions that make a certain treatment option undesirable.

Contrast agent

A substance that increases the contrast of structures or fluids in the body. It is used in medical imaging (See also Imaging).

Corpus cavernosa

Two chambers that run the length of the penis and are filled with spongy tissue. Blood flows in and fills the open spaces in this spongy tissue to create an erection.

Corpus cavernosum (plural, corpora cavernosa)

Two chambers that run the length of the penis and are filled with spongy tissue. Blood flows in and fills the open spaces in this spongy tissue to create an erection.

Corpus spongiosum

The mass of spongy tissue surrounding the male urethra within the penis.


Is the use of low temperatures in medical therapy, to treat either benign or malignant cell growth.


An absence of one or both testes in the scrotum.


Cryosurgical ablation of the prostate. In this minimally-invasive technique, freezing temperatures are applied directly to the tumour cells to kill them.

CT scan

CT stands for Computed Tomography. It is an imaging technique that makes a series of x-ray images of the body.

CT urography

CT stands for computed tomography. CT urography is an imaging technique that uses contrast agent to improve the visibility of the lymph nodes and abdominal organs during the CT scan.


Cancer of Unknown Primary; a cancer with metastasis and without known primary cancer.


Any normal or abnormal curving of a body part.


Inflammation of the bladder


A type of endoscope which is used in the urethra (see also Endoscope, Urethra).


It is a procedure in which the doctor looks inside your body with a cystoscope inserted through the urethra


A certain component of the cell skeleton.


A specimen of cells from body fluids (for example urine) or swabs. These specimens can be evaluated by specially trained persons using a microscope to identify cells suspicious for cancer.

Cytoreductive nephrectomy

Cytoreductive means reducing the number of tumour cells. This surgery is specific for metastatic kidney cancer. In this surgical procedure a tumour in the kidney is removed, while leaving distant metastases. The aim of the surgery is to reduce the total tumour cells in the body.


The cytoskeleton of the cell is a fibre-like structure and provides the cell’s shape and internal organisation.


Relieving pressure in the kidneys. A nephrostomy tube is placed directly in the kidney through the skin so that urine can leave the body.

Depot injections

An injection of a drug, usually into the muscle or right under the skin. The drug is either solid or oil-based and the active compound is released over a long period of time, without having to take any extra steps.


A smooth muscle found in the bladder wall. The detrusor muscle remains relaxed to allow the bladder to store the urine, and contracts during urination to release the urine.


A disorder of the metabolism causing excessive thirst and the production of large amounts of urine.


The doctor and nurses do a series of tests to understand what causes your symptoms.

Digital rectal examination

A test in which the doctor uses a finger to feel the size, shape, and consistency of the prostate to diagnose conditions like an enlarged prostate or prostate cancer.

Disintegrating cells

Cell disintegration or lysis is a common part of daily sample preparation in biotech laboratories. The goal of lysis is to disrupt parts of the cell wall or the complete cell to release biological molecules.

Distant metastases

Tumours that have spread from the original site to other organs or bone.


A pouch that develops in a tubular structure in the body, such as the urethra.


DNA, or deoxyribonucleic acid, is the hereditary material in humans and almost all other organisms.

Doppler ultrasound

A noninvasive test that can be used to estimate your blood flow through blood vessels by bouncing high-frequency sound waves (ultrasound) off circulating red blood cells.

Dupuytren’s contracture

A condition that affects the hands and fingers (also called Dupuytren’s disease). It causes one or more fingers to bend into the palm of the hand. It can affect one or both hands and sometimes affects the thumb.


DNA, or deoxyribonucleic acid, is the hereditary material in humans and almost all other organisms.


Pain, discomfort, or burning when urinating


Subcutaneous bleeding, hematoma.

Ectopic testis

The testis descended outside the scrotum


A non-surgical, minimally-invasive procedure in which a blood vessel is blocked to prevent the blood flow from reaching a tumour.

Embryologic structure

A tissue or structure formed during development of an embryo

Endocrinological evaluation

Measures of the levels of certain hormones produced by your body.


A medical doctor who deals with the diagnosis and treatment of diseases related to hormones.


A tube-like instrument to examine the inside of the body. Can be flexible or rigid.


Large biological molecules that are responsible for the processes of the metabolism.


Cord-like structure on the top and back of each testicle that carries sperm to the urethra for ejaculation.

Erectile dysfunction

The inability to get or keep an erection.

Erection chambers

The erectile tissue forming the bulk of the penis.

External beam radiation therapy

A type of radiation therapy in which an external source of radiation is pointed at a part of the body.

Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT)

A treatment option that uses high energy sound waves to break down tissue.

Fabry’s disease

Abnormal deposits of a fatty substance called globotriaosylceramide in blood vessel walls throughout the body.


A flat band of tissue below the skin that covers underlying tissues and separates different layers of tissue. Fascia also encloses muscles.


This means you feel more tired than usual, you are out of energy, and it doesn’t get better after you sleep. You may also experience pain in your joints, muscles, and chest.

Fatty tissue

A type of connective tissue made of cells which store fat. Also called adipose tissue.

Fertility rate

The number of offspring born per mating pair, individual, or population.


Fibrosis is the formation of excess fibrous connective tissue in an organ or tissue in a reparative or reactive process.

First-line treatment

The first treatment given for a disease. It is often part of a standard set of treatment options.


Fluorescence in situ hybridisation; a technique to visualise certain genetic areas with fluorescent dyes.


When testosterone levels increase before decreasing as a result of hormonal drug therapy with LHRH agonist drugs.

Focal therapy

A general term for a variety of minimally-invasive techniques for destroying small tumours. The main purpose of focal therapy is to limit damage to surrounding tissue.

Follicle-stimulating hormone

Follicle stimulating hormone secreted by pituitary gland. In men stimulates testes to sperm production.


In radiology, the act of dividing the dose of radiation into smaller doses with one or more rest periods in between.


Pieces of the stone broken during a procedure.

Fuhrman nuclear grade

Analysing the aggressiveness of a tumour based on the structure of its cells.


A certain area on a chromosome as a matrix for a certain cell component.

Gene biomarkers

In genetics, a biomarker (identified as genetic marker) is a DNA sequence that causes disease or is associated with susceptibility to disease.

General anaesthesia

The state when the patient is completely unconscious and unable to feel pain during medical procedures.

Genetic changes

A gene change/mutation is a permanent alteration in the DNA sequence that makes up a gene, such that the sequence differs from what is found in most people.

Genetic evaluation

Investigation of the influence of genes on diseases


A gland is an organ that synthesizes hormones for release into the bloodstream or other parts of the body.


The rounded part forming the end of the penis.


Removal of just the head of the penis.

Gleason score

The Gleason score determines the aggressiveness of a tumour in the prostate. It is based on the pattern of the cancer cells. Each pattern gets a value between 1 and 5. The pathologist adds the scores of the two patterns that appear in most of the tissue samples after a biopsy. Tumours with a higher score are more aggressive and more difficult to cure.


Having to do with the health of the female reproductive system, including the vagina, uterus and ovaries, and the breasts.


A hormonal disorder in which men have benign enlargement of breast tissue.


Measures how much space in the blood is occupied by red blood cells (percentage volume).

Haematogenous metasis

Cancer cells which have spread over the blood stream and formed a metastasis.


The diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the blood.


Occurrence of blood in the urine. Can be non-visible (microhematuria) or visible (macrohematuria).

Hand-foot syndrome

A side effect of some types of drug therapy for cancer. It causes redness, swelling and pain on the palms of the hands and/or the soles of the feet, and in some cases blisters.


A hematoma is a collection of blood, usually clotted, outside of a blood vessel that may occur because of an injury to the wall of a blood vessel, allowing blood to leak out into tissues where it does not belong.


Blood in sperm


Too much iron in the blood can cause testicular failure or pituitary gland dysfunction, by accumulating in this tissue.


High-Intensity Focussed Ultrasound. A minimally-invasive procedure that applies ultrasound energy to heat up and destroy cancer cells.

High grade

Cancer cells with severe anomalies and little resemblance to their normal counterparts.


Histiocytosis is a general name for a group of disorders or “syndromes” that involve an abnormal increase in the number of specialized white blood cells that are called histiocytes.

Histologic examination

Examination of tissue cells under a microscope.

Histological evaluation

The examination of tissue under a microscope.

Histopathological analysis

The examination of tissue under a microscope, to study the presence and characteristics of diseases such as cancer.

Hormonal therapy

Any treatment option in which hormones are used.


Molecules that are produced in glands and circulate in the blood system to reach their target organs. They affect body functions and behaviour.

Hot flushes

A medical condition characterized by redness of the skin, sweating and a sudden feeling of inner heat.

HPV infection

Infection with Human Papillomavirus (HPV), which is a sexually transmitted disease; some types of HPV can cause cancer.


An abnormality of the urethra (tube that the urine flows through out of the penis) that is present at birth. The urethra opens on the underside of the penis instead of at the tip.


Small part at the base of the brain that links nervous system with the endocrine system by the pituitary gland.


Taking images of the body with ultrasound, x-ray or other scanning techniques.


A type of cancer treatment which boosts the immune system to fight tumour cells.

Indwelling catheter

A tube placed in the urethra and bladder to help you urinate.


Infection is the invasion of an organism’s body tissues by disease-causing agents, their multiplication, and the reaction of host tissues to these organisms and the toxins they produce.


When a couple who has unprotected intercourse for a period of two years cannot conceive a baby.


Inflammation is part of the complex biological response of body tissues to harmful stimuli, such as pathogens, damaged cells, or irritants, and is a protective response involving immune cells, blood vessels, and molecular mediators. The function of inflammation is to eliminate the initial cause of cell injury, clear out necrotic cells and tissues damaged from the original insult and the inflammatory process, and to initiate tissue repair.

Intermittent catheter

A tube placed in the urethra and bladder to help you urinate. An intermittent catheter is manually placed and removed several times a day, to empty the bladder fully.

Intracavernous injection

An injection into the base of the penis.

Intramuscular injections

Injections into the muscle often in the buttock or your arm.


Injection into a vein, usually in the arm.

Intravenous urography

An imaging technique where x-ray contrast agent is injected into the vein, usually in the arm.


Any procedure in which the doctor inserts instruments into the body, or parts of the body.


Injection of a solution into the body to cleanse and administer drugs at a specific site.


A restriction in blood supply to tissues, causing a shortage of oxygen and glucose needed to keep tissue alive. Ischemia is generally caused by problems with blood vessels and causes damage to tissue.


A tube that is temporarily placed in the ureter to make sure urine can flow from the kidney to the bladder.


Two bean-shaped organs in the back of the abdomen that filter the blood and produce urine.


The inner and outer folds of the vulva, on either side of the vagina.

Laparoscopic surgery

A minimally-invasive surgical technique in which the surgeon does not need to cut through skin and tissue. Instead, the surgeon inserts the surgical instruments through small incisions in your abdomen.


A surgical procedure used to examine and operate the organs in the abdominal cavity

Laser therapy

Use of a laser to cut away cancer cells.


A cancer that arises from the blood-forming tissue.

LHRH agonists

Drugs used in prostate cancer treatment to stop the production of testosterone in the testicles.

LHRH antagonists

Drugs used in prostate cancer treatment to stop the production of testosterone, by inhibiting the production of androgens.


A short band of tough, flexible fibrous tissue which connects two bones or cartilages or holds together a joint.


A lobe is any division or extension of an organ that is clearly visible without using a microscope.

Local invasion

Cancer that has grown into the tissue surrounding the location where it started.

Local resection

Surgery to remove a tumour that has not spread to other tissues or organs.

Localised disease

A tumour that is limited to the organ where it started and has not spread.

Localized cancer

Cancer that remains in the location where it started.

Localized kidney cancer

A kidney cancer where the tumour is limited to the kidney and has not spread.

Localized prostate cancer

A prostate cancer where the tumour is limited to the prostate and has not spread.

Locally advanced disease

A tumour that has grown out of the organ where it started into the surrounding tissue or lymph nodes.

Locally-advanced kidney cancer

A cancer where the tumour has grown out of the kidneys into surrounding tissue and invaded veins, the adrenal gland, or lymph nodes.

Locally-advanced prostate cancer

A prostate cancer where the tumour has spread outside of the prostate and into surrounding tissue.

Low grade

Cancer cells with little anomalies and distinct resemblance to their normal counterparts.

Luteinizing hormone (LH)

Luteinizing hormone secreted by pituitary gland. In men stimulates testes to testosterone production.


Lower urinary tract symptoms. A term used for the symptoms caused by BPE which can also point to other diseases affecting the urinary tract (see also Urinary tract).

Lymph node metastatis

Cancer cells which have spread over the lymphatic system and formed a metastasis in a lymph node.

Lymph nodes

Small oval-shaped organs that play a role in regulating how the immune system responds.


The surgical procedure in which the lymph nodes are removed because they are enlarged due to the presence of a tumour.


A cancer that arises from white blood cells (lymphocytes).


Leakage of lymph fluid onto the skin. The fluid leads to skin damage, and may cause an infection.


What you can see with the naked eye.

Malignant tumour

A cancerous growth which either grows continuously or in spurts. Malignant tumours can metastasize, which means they spread throughout the body.

Mammary glands

Glands located in the breasts. In women, the mammary glands can produce milk.

Medical Expulsive Therapy (MET)

Medication that makes the natural passing of stones easier and less painful.

Medical history

A brief summary of previous operations, previous and current diseases, known allergies, and drugs you currently take.

Medical oncologist

A doctor who specializes in all types of cancer and mostly uses drugs to treat them.


A cancer that arises from pigmented cells (melanocytes).

Metabolic evaluation

Series of blood and urine tests for patients who have a high risk of forming stones.


The surgical procedure to remove metastases. These are tumours that have spread to other organs of the body.


Cancer cells that have spread from the original site of cancer to other tissues or organs.


The spread of cancer from one site in the body to another without direct connection between both sites.

Metastatic disease

When a tumour has spread to other organs or lymph nodes.


A metastasis that is not visible to the naked eye or on special imaging studies usually made up from only few cancer cells.


What you can see through a microscope.



Minimally-invasive procedure

A surgical procedure where there is no need to make an incision in the body. An endoscope is used to reach the part of the body that needs to be treated through the urethra (see also Endoscope).

Minimally-invasive surgery

A surgical procedure where there is no need to cut through skin and tissue. Small incisions are made in the abdomen to insert the surgical instruments.

Mixed urinary incontinence

Having symptoms of both stress urinary incontinence and urgency urinary incontinence.


Regarding molecules (the smallest particles).

Molecular techniques

Methods to get information about the molecules, for example of the genes.


Magnetic Resonance Imaging is an imaging technique that uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to make images of the body.

MRI scan

Magnetic Resonance Imaging is a technique in which strong magnetic fields and radio waves are used to make images of the body.

Mucinous histology

Mucus-producing cells that can be found in histologic examination under the microscope or by using a specific colouring test.


A mucous tissue lining.


Mucus in the urine.


A combination of different branches of expertise. In medicine, it means that for instance urologists, oncologists, psychologists or other medical specialists work together.

Multidisciplinary tumour board

A team of practitioners from different medical specialties who share their professional opinions to plan care for individual cancer patients.

Mumps infection

It is a contagious viral infection of the salivary gland with fever, headache and swelling of the salivary gland in the cheeks.


A permanent change in the genetic code.


The process through which new blood vessels form from pre-existing vessels. In cancer this process allows tumours to grow.


A substitute reservoir to hold urine after the bladder is removed.


A surgically created opening for the urethra in the penile shaft.


New abnormal growth of tissue.

Nephron-sparing surgery

Another name for partial nephrectomy, the surgical removal of a kidney tumour together with some of the normal kidney tissue. This surgery aims at preserving as much of the kidney tissue as possible.

Nephrostomy tube

A tube placed directly into the kidney through the skin. This allows the urine to leave the body.

Nerve-sparing surgery

A type of surgery that attempts to save the nerves near the tissues being removed.

Neurogenic lower urinary tract dysfunction

A complication in the lower urinary tract caused by problems in the nervous system that influences its activity.


Related to the nervous system.


A medical doctor who has trained in the diagnosis and treatment of nervous system disorders, including diseases of the brain, spinal cord, nerves, and muscles.

New hormonal agents

A group of drugs for castration-resistant prostate cancer when standard hormonal treatment is no longer effective.


Waking up one or more times during the night because of the need to urinate.

Nocturnal polyuria

When the kidneys overproduce urine at night.

Non-contrast-enhanced CT

Type of CT scan with low radiation exposure.


A type of testicular cancer that usually affects younger men and is more likely to grow and spread quickly.


A group of medicines used to relieve pain. It is often used to relieve renal colic.

Obstructive sleep apnoea

Repetitive pauses in breathing during sleep, despite the effort to breathe, commonly paired with snoring.


The main female sex hormones which control female characteristics of the body and are important to the reproductive and menstrual cycle.


A medical professional who is dedicated to the diagnosis, therapy, follow-up and general care of a person with any type of cancer.

Open surgery

A surgical procedure in which the surgeon cuts skin and tissues to have direct access to the structures or organs.


A method of surgical castration in which one or both testicles are removed. If only one testicle is removed, this is known as unilateral orchiectomy. If both testicles are removed this is referred to as bilateral orchiectomy.


A bone disease characterized by a reduction of bone mass.

Overactive Bladder Symptoms

A collection of urinary storage symptoms, including urgency, incontinence, frequency and nocturia.


A component found in many kinds of food which may be related to forming kidney or ureteral stones.

Pad test

During the pad test your doctor asks you to wear an absorbent pad. Usually the test lasts between 1 and 24 hours. You have to weigh the amount of urine absorbed by the pad.

Palliative care

A concept of care with the goal to optimize your quality of life if you cannot recover from your illness. It involves physical, psychological, social, and spiritual issues.


A prickling (“pins and needles”) or tingling (“falling asleep”) sensation of the skin.

Paraneoplastic syndromes

Reactions that the body can have to any type of cancer and may include high blood pressure, weight loss, fever, anaemia, muscle mass loss, and loss of appetite.


The foreskin stuck in the retracted position behind the head of the penis. It is considered a medical emergency that requires immediate attention.

Partial nephrectomy

A surgical procedure in which a part of the kidney is removed.


The actual potential of fatherhood.


A medical professional who studies tissue, blood, or urine to understand the specific characteristics of diseases. In cancer treatment, the pathologist helps with the diagnosis and classification of tumours.

Pelvic floor muscles

Muscles that support the pelvic organs, including the bladder and rectum.

Pelvic lymph nodes

The sum of lymph nodes collecting the lymphatic drainage of the legs, pelvis and pelvic organs.


Surgical removal of part (partial) or all (total) of the penis.

Penile curvature

Curvature of the penis is an abnormal bend in the penis that occurs during erection.

Penile fracture

Rupture of one or both of the tunica albuginea, the fibrous coverings that envelop the corpora cavernosa of the penis.


A reproductive organ in men which also carries urine out of the body.


Through the skin.

Percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PNL)

Treatment option to remove stones directly from the kidney by placing a tube through the skin.

Perinephric haematoma

A collection of blood next to or around the kidney.


The area between the anus and the scrotum or vulva.

Peripheral oedema

Oedema means swelling. Peripheral oedema refers specifically to swelling of the ankles and legs.

Perirenal fat

The fat that surrounds the kidney.


A small soluble block that is inserted into the vagina to treat infection or as a contraceptive. It can also be an elastic or rigid device that is inserted into the vagina to support the uterus.

PET scan

A positron emission tomography (PET) scan is an imaging test that uses a radioactive substance called a tracer to look for disease in the body. A PET scan shows how organs and tissues are working.


Lots of tiny red spots or bruises on your arms and legs, caused by a minor haemorrhage in the blood vessels of the skin.


A measure between 0.0 and 14.0 to describe if a fluid is acidic or alkaline. pH values close to 7.0 are neutral, anything above is alkaline, anything below is acidic.


The inability to retract the foreskin over the head of the penis.


Having to do with or affecting the body.

Pituitary gland

Small endocrine gland in the brain, originating in the hypothalamus, secreting a variety of hormones.


An semi-hardened accumulation of substances from fluids that bathe an area. Examples include dental plaque and cholesterol plaque.

Point-of-care test

A point-of-care test allows patient diagnoses in the physician’s office, an ambulance, the home, the field, or in the hospital. The results of care are timely, and allow rapid treatment decisions for the patient.

Post void residual urine (PVR)

The amount of urine left in the bladder after urination.


A persistent and painful erection of the penis.

Primary cancer

The first type of cancer to develop, the cancer of origin.

Primary polydipsia

The sensation that your mouth is dry which leads you to drink too much.

Primary tumour

The malignant cell growth located where the tumour first began to develop.

Primary urethral cancer

A malignant tumour in the urethra.


The medical term for predicting the likely outcome of health after treatment.

Prognostic information

Prognosis is a medical term for predicting the likely outcome of one’s current standing.


The gland which produces the fluid which carries semen. It is located in the male lower urinary tract, under the bladder and around the urethra.

Prostate-specific antigen (PSA)

A protein produced by the prostate which may increase in men with a benign prostatic enlargement, prostatic inflammation, or prostate cancer.


A surgical procedure in which part of or the entire prostate is removed.

PSA testing

Testing men for the level of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in their blood. A high level of PSA in the blood suggests that the cells in the prostate are behaving unusually.


A medical doctor specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness.


Having to do with or affecting the mind.


A natural process when a child’s body changes into adult body that is able to have an intercourse and reproduce.


A type of chemotherapy (psoralens) combined with exposure to ultraviolet light, used to treat severe skin disorders.

Radiation oncologist

A specialist who uses radiation therapy to treat cancer.

Radiation therapy

A type of cancer treatment that uses radiation to control or kill malignant cells.

Radical nephrectomy

A surgical procedure in which the entire kidney is removed.

Radical prostatectomy

A surgical procedure in which the entire prostate is removed.

Radiofrequency ablation

A medical procedure which uses the heat generated from high-frequency currents to treat kidney tumours.


A medical professional who specialises in imaging techniques. In cancer, the radiologist analyses x-ray, ultrasound, CT, MRI, or other scans to diagnose or monitor the tumour.


A type of therapy using radiation to kill cancer cells.


The final section of the large intestine, ending at the anus.


The return of cancer after treatment and after a period of time in which the cancer could not be detected. This can happen either in the place where the cancer first was detected, or somewhere else in the body. There is no standard period of time, but most doctors would consider it a recurrence if the cancer had not been detected again for at least one year.


When a cancer has come back (Recurrence).


A state when there is no sign of cancer detectable.


Related to the kidneys.

Renal artery

The artery that carries a large portion of the blood flow that needs to be filtered to the kidneys.

Renal artery clamp

An instrument used during surgery. The blood flow through the renal artery is blocked with a device called a clamp that compresses the artery.

Renal cell carcinoma

Medical name of kidney cancer.

Renal colic

Severe pain in flank, loin, groin, or thigh caused by a stone blocking the normal flow of urine.

Renal cyst

Fluid-filled sacs located on the kidney. Cysts can be malignant.

Renal fascia

Also called Gerota’s fascia, it is a layer of connective tissue that surrounds the kidneys.

Renal vein

This is the vein that carries the blood filtered by the kidney back into the body.


Removal of tumours from an organ.


A type of endoscope used for minimally invasive treatment of BPE.

Retrograde ejaculation

A condition when semen can no longer go through the urethra during orgasm but goes into the bladder instead. The semen later leaves the body during urination.


Behind the pelvic bone.

Risk stratification

A tool to determine a treatment pathway. It is based on disease characteristics combined with personal characteristics like medical and family history or general state of health.


Ribonucleic acid; a carrier of genetic information.


Removal of the lymph nodes at the back of the abdomen (also called “Retroperitoneal Lymph Node Dissection” ). This surgery is considered for men with a high risk of cancer spreading. It might also be performed to remove any cancer that remains after chemotherapy.


A treatment for cancer given together with or after the main treatment. It can be a treatment to prevent recurrence or part of a palliative care approach.


Inflammatory disease that affects different organs mainly lungs and lymph nodes. Collections of cells called granulomas can be found in affected tissue.


A cancer that arises from other tissues in the body such as bone, cartilage, connective and fat tissue, muscle, nerves or vessels.

Scrotal pain

Scrotal pain occurs when part or all of either one or both testicles hurt. Pain in the scrotum is also often included.


A pouch of skin containing the testicles.

Second-line treatment

Treatment that is given when initial treatment does not work, or stops working.

Secondary cancer

A tumour that grows from the metastasized cells of primary cancer.

Seminal vesicles

A pair of glands located below the bladder. They produce semen.


A type of testicular cancer that can grow in men of any age but is less aggressive than non-seminoma.


The sensitivity of a clinical test refers to the ability of the test to correctly identify those patients with the disease (true positive rate).

Sentinel node

The lymph node closest to the tumour that would hold metastatic cells, if present.

Sex glands

In male: testes, in female: ovaries.

Sex hormones

In male androgens – group of steroid hormones, represented mainly by testosterone.

Sexual health

A state of physical, emotional, mental and social well-being in relation to sexuality.

Shock-wave lithotripsy (SWL)

Treatment option to break stones into smaller pieces using high energy sound waves. Stone fragments pass with urine after the procedure.

Sickle cell disease

A condition in which there are not enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen throughout the body.

Skin graft

A piece of skin taken from one part of the body and placed on another part (usually a wound).

Sleep apnea

Sleep disorder characterized by shallow breathing or pauses in breathing.

Sleep apnoea

Sleep disorder characterized by shallow breathing or pauses in breathing.

Smooth muscle

Muscle tissue that is responsible for the contraction of hollow organs, like blood vessels


The specificity of a clinical test refers to the ability of the test to correctly identify those patients without the disease (true negative rate).

Spinal cord compression

An emergency condition where a tumour or bone fragment puts pressure on the nerves in the spinal cord.

Spongy urethra

Spongy tissue surrounding the urethra.

Squamous cell carcinoma

Cancer that specifically affects epithelial cells.

Steroid drug

A drug that tries to reproduce the effect of a hormone in the body. Some steroids are used to treat infections. Other steroid drugs have effects similar to testosterone.

Stress urinary incontinence (SUI)

When your urethra or urinary sphincter cannot resist the pressure of a full bladder. As a result, you lose urine when the pressure on your lower urinary tract suddenly increases. This can happen during activities like coughing, sneezing, or laughing, exercise like running or jumping, or carrying heavy things like groceries.

Superficial cancer

A tumour that grows on the tissue surface without growing into deeper layers or adjacent organs. This type of cancer represents an early stage.

Surgical robot system

An instrument to help doctors perform laparoscopic surgery. The surgeon controls the robotic instrument with remote control sensors.

Symptom-guided treatment

Closely monitoring a patient’s condition but postponing therapy until symptoms appear or change.

Systemic disease

Disease that affects the entire body.

Targeted therapy

These are drugs that target the mechanisms that cancer cells use to grow.

Temporary ED

Erectile dysfunction that is not chronic or permanent.


The testicles are the male organs that produce sperm and the male hormone testosterone.

Testicular cancer

A growth called a tumour that starts in the testicle and can spread throughout the body.

Testicular torsion

Testicular torsion occurs when the spermatic cord (from which the testicle is suspended) twists, cutting off the testicle’s blood supply, a condition called ischemia. The principal symptom is rapid onset of testicular pain.


A steroid androgen hormone that is produced mainly in the testicles and is responsible for the development of male sexual characteristics.


A blood disorder characterized by less haemoglobin and fewer red blood cells in the body than normal.


A gland found in the neck which controls how quickly the body uses energy, makes proteins and how sensitive it is to other hormones.

Titanium port

The non-metallic part of an Artificial Urinary Sphincter (AUS) that serves to adjust the pressure of the device.

TNM classification

The Tumour Node Metastasis (TNM) classification is an international classification used to classify tumours according to the size and invasiveness of the tumour (T), whether any lymph nodes are affected (N) and if the cancer has spread to any other parts of your body (M).


Through the natural space in the hip bone.

Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP)

TURP is a standard surgery to treat benign prostatic enlargement (BPE). A part of the prostate is removed to improve the symptoms without making an incision in your lower abdomen. This type of surgery is known as minimally invasive treatment.

Treatment pathway

One of the main management tools for doctors. The different tasks or interventions are defined, optimized and set in a specific order. With this the medical team can work on the health of a patient together.


A disease caused by breathing in a bacteria called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. TB usually infects the lungs. TB can also infect other parts of the body, including the kidneys, spine and brain.


A growth of abnormal cells.

Tumour grade

The potential of a tumour to grow aggressively.

Tumour markers

High levels of certain proteins that suggest testicular cancer. Tumour markers are measured in a blood sample.

Tumour spillage

When tumour cells reach the blood or another organ during surgery. These cells may grow in a different location and develop into tumours.

Tumour stage

This refers to how extended a cancer is in the body. It is usually based on the size of the tumour and whether the tumour has spread to the lymph nodes or other organs.

Tunica albuginea

The whitish membrane within the penis that surrounds the spongy chambers (corpora cavernosa). The tunica albuginea helps trap blood in the corpora cavernosa, thereby sustaining erection of the penis.


TUR stands for Transurethral Resection. A tube-like instrument is used to remove tissue through the urethra (the canal through which the urine is passed).


Imaging technique that uses high-frequency sounds to make an image of the inside of the body (ultrasound).


Imaging technique that uses high-frequency sounds to make an image of the inside of the body.

Umbilical discharge

Substance produced by the navel.

Urachal residues

Traces of the tissue or cells that formed the urachus before birth


A tube-like embryologic structure that connects the forming urinary bladder and the navel before birth.


One of the two tubes through which urine flows from the kidneys to the bladder.

Ureteroscope (rigid or flexible)

An endoscope used for the urinary tract. It is inserted into the urethra and can move through the bladder, up the ureter, and even into the kidney.

Ureteroscopy (URS)

Treatment option to remove kidney or ureteral stones. A ureteroscope is inserted into the urinary tract via the urethra to pull out the stone.


The urethra is the tube that allows urine to pass out of the body. In men, it’s a long tube that runs through the penis. It also carries semen in men. In women, the urethra is short and is located just above the vagina.

Urethral opening

The external opening of the urethra, from which urine is ejected during urination.

Urethral wall

The layer of tissue that shapes the urethra.


Removal of the urethra. Removal can be partial or complete.


The sudden need to urinate which is difficult to postpone.

Urgency urinary incontinence

Urgency urinary incontinence (UUI) happens when you get a sudden need to urinate which you cannot postpone. The bladder muscle contracts and you urinate when you do not want to.

Uric acid

A chemical that is created when the body breaks down substances called purines.

Urinary cytology

The examination of a urine sample for exfoliated cancer cells.

Urinary diversion

A surgical procedure to construct an alternative means of storing and passing urine.

Urinary frequency

The need to urinate more often than usual, generally more than 8 times a day.

Urinary incontinence

Involuntary loss of urine.

Urinary retention

When you are unable to urinate. This condition can be chronic.

Urinary sphincter

The muscles used to control the exit of urine in the bladder, through the urethra. When either one of the muscles contracts, the urethra is sealed shut.

Urinary stoma

An artificial opening for passing urine.

Urinary swab test

Also known as “urine dip test” or just a “urine test”. A test strip is dipped into collected urine to colour-indicate the pH level and the presence of electrolytes and cells.

Urinary tract

The organ system which produces and transports urine through and out of the body. It includes two kidneys, two ureters, the bladder and the urethra. The urinary tract is similar in men and women, only men have a longer urethra.

Urinary tract

The organ system that produces and transports urine through and out of the body. It includes two kidneys, two ureters, the bladder, and the urethra. The urinary tract is similar in men and women, but the urethra is longer in men.

Urinary tract cancer

Bladder, kidney and urethral cancer.

Urinary tract infection

A urinary tract infection is an infection in any part of the urinary system: the kidneys, ureters, bladder, or urethra.

Urination cycle

The urination cycle has two phases. One is when the bladder fills up, and it is followed by the urination phase, where the bladder empties.

Urine leakage

The accidental escape of urine from the bladder.

Urodynamic test

Urodynamics is generally used as a collective term for all tests of bladder and urethral function. It is widely used to direct decisions about treatment and provide prognostic information


A special funnel that is used during a uroflowmetry test. The funnel is connected to a measuring instrument that calculates the amount of urine, rate of flow in seconds, and length of time until you finish urinating.


Stone disease.


A doctor specialized in health and diseases of the urinary tract and the genitals.

Urothelial carcinoma

Typically occurs within the urinary tract and affects urothelial cells, as opposed to other types of cells in the urinary tract.

Vacuum erection device

An external pump with a band on it that a man with erectile dysfunction can use to get and maintain an erection.


The muscular tube leading from the external genitals to the cervix of the uterus in women.

Vena Cava

The large vein that returns blood with low oxygen from the body into the heart.


The female external genitals.