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Oct 13 2010, 8:18 PM EDT (current) AndyC 397 words added
Oct 13 2010, 8:13 PM EDT AndyC

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Spermatic Cord, Scrotum, and Testis

Spermatic cord

  • Is composed of the ductus deferens; testicular , cremasteric, and deferential arteries; pampiniform plexus testicular veins; genital branch of the genitofemoral and cremasteric nerves and the testicular sympathetic plexus; and lymph vessels. These are all conjoined by loose connective tissue.

  • Has several fasciae:
    • External spermatic fascia , derived from the aponeurosis of the external oblique muscle.
    • Cremasteric fascia (cremaster muscle and fascia), originating in the internal oblique muscle.
    • Internal spermatic fascia , derived from the transversalis fascia.

Fetal structures


Processus vaginalis testis
  • Is a peritoneal diverticulum in the fetus that evaginates into a developing scrotum and forms the visceral parietal layers of the tunica vaginalis testis.
  • Normally closes before birth or shortly thereafter and loses its connection with the peritoneal cavity.
  • May result in a congenital indirect inguinal hernia if it persists.
  • May cause fluid accumulation (hydrocele processus vaginalis) if it is occluded.
Tunica vaginalis
  • Is a double serous membrane , a peritoneal sac that covers the front and sides of the testis and epididymis.
  • Is derived from the abdominal peritoneum and forms the innermost layer of the scrotum.

Gubernaculum testis
  • Is the fetal ligament that connects the bottom of the fetal testis to the developing scrotum.
  • Appears to be important in testicular descent (pulls the testis down as it migrates).
  • Is homologous to the ovarian ligament and the round ligament of the uterus.

Scrotum

  • Consists of a thin pigmented skin and dartos fascia, a layer of smooth muscle fibers; when contracted, it wrinkles to regulate the temperature.
  • Is innervated by genital branch of the genitofemoral, anterior scrotal branch of the ilioinguinal, posterior scrotal branch of the perineal, and perineal branch of the posterior femoral cutaneous nerves.
  • Receives blood from anterior scrotal branches of the external pudendal artery and posterior scrotal branches of the internal pudendal artery and drains lymph initially into the superficial inguinal nodes.

Testes

  • Are surrounded by the tunica vaginalis in the scrotum, and produce sperms in the seminiferous tubules and
  • testosterone by interstitial (Leydig) cells.
  • Are innervated by the autonomic nerves, drain lymph into the deep inguinal nodes and to the lumbar and
  • preaortic nodes, receive blood from the testicular arteries arising from the aorta, and drain venous blood testicular veins, which empty into the inferior vena cava on the right and the renal vein on the left.


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