A total of 330 in-patient episodes at the urology ward, with a mean duration of 9.8 days, were registered in a study of 100 patients who died from urological cancer. Twelve patients spent more than two months of their last year of life at the urology ward. As many as 82% of the admittances were on an emergency basis. A total of 101 operations were performed on 84 patients; 47 patients received palliative radiotherapy. This patient category needs a great deal of palliative care--at short notice--in order to get an optimal quality of life. Although many symptoms could have been alleviated outside hospital, the majority of patients needed specialised urological hospital care during their last year of life.