As there are so many organs involved, it is likely that malfunctions will take place from time to time. In the main, these happen surprisingly seldom. But as with any bodily organ, with the passage of time, and with wear and tear, with the incessant bombardment of hostile outside influences such as viruses and bacteria, a series of pathological disorders may take place.

Infections can occur. Overgrowth of tissue may occur. Cancers can grow, as certain cells take on abnormal qualities and develop along these bizarre lines causing neoplasms or new growths or carcinomas—all words meaning cancer. This section sets out the chief abnormalities that can occur in the urinary system. Some are very common and affect many people. Others are rare and are seldom seen in everyday life.

More attention has been focused on the common disorders and those that the reader might contract or develop or hear about. It is not meant to be a total encyclopedia of urinary-tract knowledge, but a discussion of practical value that may be of some everyday use.

The key parts, we believe, are the sections dealing with symptoms, for these are the factors of vital importance. These are the telltale features that may occur. If one has some knowledge of them, knows what to look for, knows what the hidden meaning may be, then there will be much more incentive to act. Action in medicine is often imperative to prevent the development of what starts out to be something simple, into something that may be disastrous.

On a regular, ongoing basis, more information and knowledge are being amassed each year.

The kidney structure in itself has an incredible number of classifications and sub-classifications and lists of names that are too much for even some doctors, to say nothing of the confusion that exists with the lay reader.

An effort to be as up to date as possible has been made with all parts of this book. Some of the more recent work is of academic interest mainly, and often makes little difference to the actual handling and treatment of a sick patient. Some areas in this section may be in the melting pot of current research, and may change in certain respects as time passes. But for all practical purposes it should remain “in date” for some time to come.