Urology Blog
By Greater Austin Urology
July 12, 2018
Category: Urology
Tags: kidney stones  

According to the National Kidney Foundation, one in ten people will develop kidney stones at some point in their life, and the incidence of kidney stoneskidney stones continues to rise for both men and women. Although anyone can develop a kidney stone at any point, there are a number of factors that can increase the risk. Dr. Lucas Jacomides, a urologist at Greater Austin Urology in Austin, TX, offers diagnostic and treatment options for kidney stones and other urology problems.

Kidney Stones Diagnosis and Treatment

Kidney stones are most common in men over age 30, but they also affect women and children. According to statistics, the incidence of kidney stones is on the rise, and close to half a million people seek emergency treatment for kidney stones every year.

What are Kidney Stones?

Kidney stones (also known as renal lithiasis or nephrolithiasis) are hardened salt and mineral deposits that develop in the kidneys. Depending on the size and number, kidney stones can be incredibly painful as they move out of the kidneys and through the urinary tract.

Signs and Symptoms of Kidney Stones

You may not be aware that you have a kidney stone until it begins to pass through your urinary tract. Some of the common signs and symptoms of kidney stones include:

  • Sharp, radiating pain from the groin or lower abdomen
  • Painful urination
  • Foul smelling or dark colored urine (pink/red/brown)
  • Urinating more than usual or in small amounts
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Fever/chills (sign of an infection)
  • Blood in urine

It is important to see a doctor as soon as possible for symptoms like severe pain or signs of infection.

There are four types of kidney stones:

  • Uric acid
  • Calcium
  • Struvite
  • Cystine

What Causes Kidney Stones?

There are a few factors that can increase the risk:

  • Dehydration
  • High sodium and protein diets
  • Obesity
  • Family history
  • Side effect of digestive procedures or issues like gastric bypass surgery, chronic diarrhea, or inflammatory bowel disease

Treating Kidney Stones

Depending on the size and severity, a urologist may recommend dietary changes, medication, or surgery.

To learn more about kidney stone prevention and treatment, contact Dr. Lucas Jacomides at Greater Austin Urology in Austin, TX by calling (512) 540-3937 to schedule an appointment.

By Greater Austin Urology
May 21, 2018
Category: Urology

Does urinary incontinence keep you from doing the things you really want to do? When you're constantly worried about urine leakage urinary incontinenceor accidents it's difficult to truly enjoy life. Luckily, an array of effective treatments can control urgency, leaks, and accidents. At Greater Austin Urology, Dr. Lucas Jacomides, provides several treatment options.

What causes urinary incontinence?

Your symptoms may be due to overactive bladder, overflow incontinence or stress urinary incontinence. If you have overactive bladder, your brain decides that you need to empty your bladder even if it's not full, triggering an urgent need to visit the restroom.

Overflow incontinence occurs when you begin to leak urine due to bladder fullness or overproduction of urine. The condition can occur due to weak bladder muscles, nerve damage, a blockage in your urethra, an enlarged prostate gland, or if you've had prostate surgery.

Do you leak urine when you sneeze, laugh, or bend? You may have stress urinary incontinence. The condition is caused by weak pelvic floor muscles and may be more likely to occur if you're obese, have a urinary tract infection or have been pregnant or had a child.

What can I do about urinary incontinence?

We can offer a variety of treatment options when you visit our Austin office. Although treatment depends on the cause of your condition, it may include:

  • Bladder training to help you lengthen the time between restroom visits
  • Kegel exercises to strengthen weak pelvic floor muscles
  • Medications to reduce urges, calm your overactive bladder, make emptying the bladder easier, or relax the bladder, allowing it to hold more urine
  • Pessaries, devices inserted into the vagina that supports the bladder and reduce leakage
  • Botox injections to treat overactive bladder if other treatment options aren't effective
  • Sling surgery to support the bladder and keep the urethra closed when you move if you have stress urinary incontinence
  • Other types of surgery to support the urethra and bladder neck or implant a ring around the neck of the bladder to prevent leakage in men

Would you like to finally find relief for your urinary incontinence symptoms? Call Dr. Lucas Jacomides at Greater Austin Urology in Austin, TX at (512) 540-3937 to schedule your appointment.

April 26, 2018
Category: Uncategorized
Tags: Untagged

Howdy folks! I know, it's been a while since my last Blog, but I've been busy trying to Make Urology Greater Again. Plus, I've been searching for something meaningful and positive to say, since my mom thinks my past blogs sounded a little bitter. What do you think?

Overall, I'm alive and well in the great city of Austin, TX, so life is good. Greater Austin Urology is gradually filling up with patients, both old and new. I have performed my first 2 robotic cases, and they went well. And on April 12, we celebrated our second month in business with a Grand Opening/Open House at the office. Many thanks to everybody who pitched in to make it successful: Glen Dyson and Lance Gay from Cogentix, Britney Blankenship from Touchstone Imaging, Danny Williamson from 180 Medical, Landon Groff from J&R Medical, and last but not least, my parents Nick and Vasso Jacomides, for coming all the way from Houston to bring baklava!

Of course, there have been some down moments too. Starting and running a business, especially a medical practice, is not easy. There are serious headwinds that eventually force many of the small fish in the ocean to seek power in numbers, whether it be with big hospital systems, big multi-specialty clinics, or big single-specialty practices. I really think there are a lot of people out there who want to see me and others like me fail, but I keep looking for allies to help me win the battle. Unfortunately, while attending one of those meetings yesterday, my car got broken into and my laptop was stolen. Don't worry- all of my data is password-encrypted, but it still sucks nonetheless. I feel like the only doctor who had a worse week than me was Ronny Jackson, Trump's doctor and failed pick for VA Secretary!

It's easy to get despondent, but lately whenever I start to feel this way, for some strange reason (for which I'm sure I will catch a little grief), I think of the words to the song "Roar" by pop diva Katy Perry:

"You held me down, but I got up. Get ready 'cause I had enough. I see it all, I see it now. I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing though the fire, 'cause I am a champion, and you're going to hear me roar, louder, louder than a lion, 'cause I am a champion, and you're going to hear me roar!"

I know, make fun of me all you want, but the best days of Greater Austin Urology are ahead of us. I won't go down without a fight, and it's going to take a lot more than petty larceny to get me down. So time to jump on the bandwagon, everybody, because I am a champion, and you're going to hear me roar!

Lately, whenever I think about corporate medicine (or corporate anything, for that matter), I cannot help but think of that song from The Lego Movie.  “Everything is awesome! Everything is cool when you’re part of a team.”  As long as you go to work, do your job exactly like everyone else, and follow the instructions without questioning authority, everyone wins.  The only problem is that behind that perfect façade, “Lord Business” is plotting to unleash the “Kragle” on Taco Tuesday, but everyone is too focused on mindlessly doing their job during the day and watching “Where Are My Pants?” at night to see it coming.  At that point, your only hope is that “The Special” will come along with “The Piece of Resistance” to stop the Kragle and save the world.

 

Like all other underdogs, I completely identified with the protagonist Emmet- not because I’m “special”, but because like Emmet, I think differently than most people.  While everyone else is busy building practical things, I think about building the next double-decker couch, because to me it seems practical, and in the right setting, it can come in handy.  I have also never backed down from questioning authority whenever I didn’t think something was right.  So, despite my initial feelings to the contrary, maybe being at the top of the corporate ladder wasn’t the right place for me, because I didn’t like pretending and telling everyone below that everything was awesome, when I knew deep-down it really wasn’t.

 

That is not to say that I cannot be an effective leader.  A lot of the most successful organizations in the world (Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Google, Netflix, Southwest Airlines, Tesla, to name a few) were led by forward-thinking leaders who thought differently than their competitors, and because of that they completely revolutionized their respective industries.  The key is to pick an industry in which there is an inherent problem that merits disruption, and lucky for me, the Healthcare Industry happens to be one of them.

 

So, if you will excuse me, I’ll be on the lookout for a group of similarly-minded “Master Builders” who will help me find “The Piece of Resistance” so that we can save our profession from “Lord Business.”  But first, I must find my pants. Until then, Happy Taco Tuesday, everyone!

After spending most of the past 2 months getting the new office ready for business, it was great to finally get back to doing what I normally do this week. Along the way, I have learned many valuable lessons that I want to share with anyone thinking about starting their own business:

  1. No one is on the same timeline as you. Granted, the holiday season is not the best time to start a new business, but no matter how quickly you want to get going, the rest of the world will move at its usual glacial pace. It doesn’t matter if you are an insurance company or medical staff coordinator in charge of credentialing new doctors, a web design team in charge of building your website, or a previous tenant packing up to move out of your future office space, no one is in as big a hurry as you.

 

  1. You cannot do this alone. There is no shortage of people wanting to cash in on you (e.g., passing themselves as “working with Google” to increase your business). However, there is way too much to do, so as with all things in life, it is imperative to surround yourself with good people that you trust. I could not have done this without the help of my team, too many to list here. Special shoutouts go out to Yvonne Mounkhoune at TMA, Nick Albino at Independent Bank, Jenny Frix at AthenaHealth, Josh Johnson at McKesson, and Caroline Domin, who connected me with several of these folks and was an invaluable source of help and inspiration along the way. And finally, my wife and family, who continue to tolerate and support me, no matter what I do.

 

  1. At some point, (almost) everyone should do this. I get so tired of listening to doctors constantly complain about how medicine has changed, and how they are powerless to do anything to change it. Well, I am living proof that you can do something about it. Call it what you want (boredom, burnout, midlife crisis, or a combination of the above), but I left a very successful practice with a load of administrative responsibilities largely because I was miserable. I was too busy to realize it myself, so it took the people who knew me the best to tell me so. Now, I am a changed man. Having your finger on the pulse of your practice is empowering and uplifting. When you own your own practice and become your own boss, almost every decision begins and ends with you, and there is no better way to control rising health care costs than when you are the one cutting the checks.

 

Feel free to comment and pass along to whomever you wish. I plan to revisit this topic a year from now, if not sooner. Until then, I will continue to periodically share my thoughts with you on various topics, on business, medicine, or whatever. I will try my best to keep it funny and interesting. If you have any specific topics you want me to discuss, please reach out to me.





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