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About Us

Who we are...

The Center for Reconstructive Urology at the University of California, Irvine Medical Center in Orange, California is a regional, national, and international tertiary referral center dedicated to the treatment of disorders of the male urethra and external genitalia. In addition to patient care, our mission includes clinical and laboratory research and teaching.
Dr. Joel Gelman, is the Director of the Center for Reconstructive Urology. In addition, world-renowned physicians with expertise in other sub-specialties in Urology and in other specialties including Plastic, Colo-Rectal, Orthopedic, and Pediatric surgery and Anesthesiology work together as certain complex problems require a multidisciplinary approach.


Our reputation attracts patients from across the United States and around the globe


Our reputation attracts patients from across the United States and around the globe


The Center for Reconstructive Urology was established in 1998 at the University of California, Irvine as the first Center of Excellence dedicated to the treatment of men with urethral and penile-genital disorders.

When Dr. Joel Gelman completed his Urology Residency training at the UCLA Medical Center in 1995, he then formally pursued formal Fellowship Training to become an expert in urethral stricture surgery, penile curvature correction, and penile implant surgery in particular. His mentor was Dr. Gerald Jordan who was trained by Dr. Charles Devine, the Urologist who was responsible for the establishment the first Fellowship in male reconstructive urology and the Genitourinary Reconstructive Surgeons Society (GURS). When Dr. Gelman completed his Fellowship, he was recruited to UC, Irvine in 1998. At that time, there were very few Urologists in the United States with expertise in male urethral and genital surgery (urethral stricture disease and urethral trauma, penile curvature correction, penile implant surgery, and the treatment of other disorders of the male genitalia).

After Dr. Gelman established the Center for Reconstructive Urology, he volunteered to do surgery at UCLA and USC and other institutions, presented papers and provided talks at regional and national educational meetings, and developed a Center of Excellence at UC, Irvine. The objective was to offer men curative treatment options not previously available and create awareness of modern state-of-the-art options. To date, over 300 Urologists have referred patients to our Center, including Faculty at other major academic teaching institutions.

However, we soon recognized that many men with urethral strictures were inappropriately being treated ineffectively with repeated dilations and internal incisions without being aware their condition could be curatively treated with a single operation called a urethroplasty. In general, informed consent requires that patients be informed of all reasonable options (especially the options that has by far the highest success rate), not only the options within the expertise and comfort level of the doctor. In an effort to reach out to those patients directly, our Center established the first comprehensive educational website on urethral stricture disease. In 2001, we purchased the domain name At the time, that domain was purchased for under $20 because it was unused and not considered a “premium” name. We subsequently expanded our content to include other disorders we treat, and our domain names included and and others. We subsequently combined our educational website into 1 resource for those seeking educational information about their medical conditions so they can make informed treatment decisions.

Our patients have reached out to us and travelled from most other states in the United State to seek care, and we also have had patients travel to us for treatment from Canada, South Africa, Italy, Israel, Australia, Dubai, Equador, Egypt, Russia, Singapore, and other countries. At the Center for Reconstructive Urology, Dr. Gelman has performed over 2,000 urethral and penile-genital reconstructive surgeries, and our Center has expanded to include other Faculty, and the establishment of an endowed Fellowship in Male Reconstructive. Our clinical research will now be supplemented with a basic science research program in tissue engineering with funding provided by the Randy Douthit Tissue Engineering fund and the funding of a Presidential Endowed Chair in Tissue Engineering named after Mr. Jerry D. Choate.

The primary purpose of the Center for Reconstructive Urology is to help men with urethral and genital disorders. However, our additional mission is to innovate, educate, and also help improve the care in other parts of the world. Our website was developed to provide you with information related to each component of our mission.

University of California, Irvine

The University of California was established in 1869 and expanded to include 10 campuses including the University of California, Irvine, the only major academic institution in Orange County, California. UC, Irvine has produces 3 Nobel laureates and offers 192 degree programs. The UC, Irvine School of Medicine is top ranked medical school that receives more than 6,500 applications for 104 positions in the first-year class. One of the 28 academic Departments in the School of Medicne is the Department of Urology which offers a 5-year Residency Training program in Urology. Dr. Gelman is a Professor of Urology at UC, Irvine where he is actively involved in Medical Student, Resident, and Fellow education and research in addition to patient care. This is consistent with the mission of the University which is “Teach, Discover, Heal”.

All patient care is provided at the outpatient clinics and the hospital of the University of California, Irvine Medical Center located in Orange, CA. The Medical Center is 3.4 miles from Disneyland, 9.5 miles from the John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana (SNA) 18 miles from the Long Beach Airport (LGB) and 35 miles from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).