Overview of the GU System
The genitourinary (je-nuh-toh-YUR-un-ner-ee) system is made up of several parts of the body (kidney, ureter, bladder, prostate, testes, penis, and more) that play a role in sexual reproduction or in getting rid of bodily waste and fluid in the form of urine.
The Prostate
The prostate is a walnut-sized gland that makes and stores seminal fluid, a milky liquid that nourishes sperm. Located below the bladder and in front of the rectum, the prostate encircles the upper part of the urethra, which is the tube that empties urine from the bladder. The prostate requires male hormones, like testosterone, to function properly, helping to regulate bladder control and normal sexual functioning.

A man's risk of developing prostate cancer increases with age. Although it can occur at any age, it is most often found in men over the age of 50, and more than 75 percent of tumors are found in men over age 65. A family history of prostate cancer may also increase an individual's risk of developing the disease, particularly if he has a number of close relatives who were diagnosed with prostate tumors or if any relatives were younger than 60 at the time of diagnosis.
» Learn More about Prostate Cancer
The Testes
The testicle, or testis [tes′tis] (plural: testes [tes′tēz′]), is the paired male reproductive gland located in the scrotum that makes sperm and male hormones, like testosterone.

Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in men between the ages of 15 and 35. It can occur in older men, and rarely in younger boys. Caucasian men are more likely than African-American and Asian American men to develop this type of cancer. Any man can develop testicular cancer, but the cause of testicular cancer is not exactly known. However, factors that may increase the risk of developing testicular cancer include: abnormal testicular development, family history of testicular cancer, an undescended testicle, Klinefelter syndrome, exposure to certain chemicals, and HIV infection. » Learn More about Testicular Cancer

The Bladder
The bladder is the part of the genitourinary system where waste products, filtered from your blood by your kidneys, are stored and transported out of your body in the form of urine.  The kidneys filter about 20% of your total blood each minute to get rid of the by-products.  The by-products from each kidney travel down a long tube to the bladder, called a ureter, and stored until the brain sends a signal for the bladder to contract and empty.  This emptying occurs via a shorter tube, called the urethra, and is what we call urination.

Bladder cancer occurs when the cells in the bladder start growing out of control, and form new abnormal growth.  These abnormal growths can invade neighboring organs (prostate in men, uterus or vagina in women) or can break away and spread to other parts of your body. » Learn More about Bladder Cancer

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