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Welcome to the Why Urology podcast with Dr. Todd Brandt.

This podcast is my personal attempt to teach you about your genito-urinary tract, what can go wrong, and how your urologist may just become your superhero.

The name of the podcast comes from my ongoing need to answer the question that I get so often from patients, friends, and family, “Why Urology? Why did you choose to become a urologist?”

Feb 17, 2019

This podcast is my personal open-ended conversation centered around a question I commonly get from patients, friends, and family, “Why Urology?”

 In this podcast episode, I will be talking about renal or kidney cysts. I will also introduce the Bosniak classification of renal or kidney cysts which helps doctors differentiate simple and complex renal cysts with regard to the risk that the cyst might be cancerous.

Kidney cysts are common.The incidence increases as people age. An estimated 50 percent of people will have kidney cysts by age 50.

Fortunately, most kidney cysts are what we call “simple” cysts.

A simple cyst is like a water balloon, thin walled and round, with a water density fluid filling it.

Here are four basic things you need to remember about kidney cysts:

  1. Simple kidney cysts usually do not cause symptoms or reduce kidney function.
  2. Most all simple kidney cysts are found during imaging tests done for other reasons.
  3. Treatment is not needed for simple kidney cysts that do not cause any symptoms.
  4. The chance that a simple kidney cyst leads to cancer is very low.

The thing about most things in medicine, and about renal cysts as well, is that things are not always simple.

The Bosniak Classification of a renal cyst helps doctors determine which cysts need close follow-up or surgery.