Outstanding Care for Pediatric Patients
Pediatric urology in the Department of Urology at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health continues to evolve to meet the needs of the youngest patients.
The care team is growing, facilities have been upgraded and new clinical programs have been added while improving upon the strength of existing ones. The expanded program at American Family Children’s Hospital offers state-of-the-art care in all aspects of pediatric urology, with the goal of being an extension of the many physicians in the region who take care of these patients.
The Department is working to break down barriers of insurance, geographic separation and economic factors to allow all children access to specialized treatments that harness the power of UW Health’s academic endeavors to provide unsurpassed patient care. Quality outcomes are one of the most important deciding factors for patients who select UW Health.
The pediatric urologists are fortunate to be practicing in a children’s hospital that has top programs in overlapping specialties of nephrology, endocrinology, radiology, emergency medicine, maternal fetal medicine, pediatric infectious disease, neonatology and general pediatrics. UW Health also utilizes one of the best electronic health record systems in the country.
The highest quality pediatric care comes from working in teams of physicians employing best practices throughout the entire system. UW Health pediatric urologists collaborate with other UW Health subspecialists to develop and implement best practices to improve quality and efficiency in six key areas.
The first focus area includes lower urinary tract dysfunction, urinary tract infections and vesicoureteral reflux. These problems affect more than 10 million children in the United States. The Department of Urology introduced a nationally recognized noninvasive continence program that utilizes new approaches to managing these problems using noninvasive studies and computer games. This program significantly lowers urinary tract infections, decreases the need to surgically correct vesicoureteral reflux by 95 percent and is successful in curing lower urinary tract dysfunction in close to 100 percent of children, with less than 10 percent requiring medication.
This continued cutting-edge research will keep UW Health at the forefront of care. The Department’s second focus area is the renal calculi program which broadens a successful multispecialty group to involve radiology, emergency room physicians, pediatricians and other primary care physicians. UW Health will be working to streamline care, decrease intervention, decrease radiation exposure, decrease patient discomfort and provide patient education.
The third area of focus is complex pediatric urologic surgical reconstruction, which involves multiple specialties including anesthesia, plastic surgery and orthopedics. Most of these problems require longterm care and a strong relationship with the team involved.
The fourth focus area is management of genitourinary tumors. A growing team of subspecialists is working together to spare kidney and bladder function while minimizing radiation and chemotherapy. UW Health is extremely lucky to have one of the top pediatric oncology groups to help manage children with these mostly curable problems. The focus is now on decreasing complications from treatment that may occur later in life.
The fifth area of focus is to expand the current multispecialty team dealing with disorders of sexual development (DSD). This area has advanced significantly and new team approaches are essential.
Finally, a critically important team is focused on the management of antenatally identified urologic problems, which are present in approximately one percent of all pregnancies. Most of these problems can be managed with outpatient evaluation and seldom require surgery. Working with UW Health maternal fetal medicine physicians in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology is critical to appropriate postnatal care.
These six teams each develop specific recommendations of care that focus on decreasing invasive studies and surgical procedures, limiting medication use, decreasing pain, streamlining patient visits, measuring outcomes, improving efficiency and becoming nationally recognized as the model of pediatric urologic clinical care.
All areas will utilize the power of UW Health’s top-rated electronic health record system to identify and provide recommendations to physician groups in the system as they identify children with these problems.