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Anatomy and Physiology

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Welcome to our health education library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

Your urinary tract helps to eliminate urine. The upper urinary tract consists of the kidneys and the ureters. The kidneys collect and filter waste and water, making urine. The lower urinary tract consists of the bladder, urethra, and sphincters. Urine travels through the ureters to the bladder, which stores urine. The bladder wall is made up of a muscle, called the detrusor.  When you urinate, the detrusor squeezes and small muscles, called sphincters, relax to release urine. When urine is released from the bladder, it travels through the urethra exiting the body. In women, the opening of the urethra is located just below the clitoris, near the front of the vagina.

Your urinary tract helps to eliminate urine. The upper urinary tract consists of the kidneys and the ureters. The kidneys collect and filter waste and water, making urine. The lower urinary tract consists of the bladder, urethra, and sphincters. Urine travels through the ureters to the bladder, which stores urine.  The bladder wall is made up of a muscle, called the detrusor.  When you urinate, the detrusor squeezes and small muscles, called sphincters, relax to release urine. When urine is released from the bladder, it travels through the urethra exiting the body. In men, the prostate gland wraps around the urethra near the bladder. The opening of the urethra is located at the tip of the penis.

The reproductive system is the part of the body involved in sexual function. The male reproductive anatomy includes:

  1. The vas deferens are tubes that carry sperm from the epididymis to the penis.
  2. The epididymis is a coiled tube that holds sperm while they mature.
  3. The testes are glands that produce sperm (reproductive cells) and hormones.
  4. The seminal vesicles and prostate gland produce a fluid that supports the semen.
  5. The urethra transports urine and semen. When you have an orgasm, semen is ejaculated out of the urethra.

The prostate is a gland of the male reproductive system, that is located below the bladder. It surrounds the urethra (the tube that carries urine and semen out of the body). The prostate gland is the size of a chestnut and is composed of several lobes. These include:

  • Anterior Lobe-in the front of the urethra   
  • Median Lobe-in the middle
  • Lateral Lobes-left and right sides
  • Posterior Lobe-in the back

The function of the prostate is to produce a fluid that mixes with fluid from the seminal vesicles and sperm from the testicles to form semen.

As men get older, the prostate may enlarge, and can cause urinary symptoms due to its location surrounding the urethra.

Anatomy & Physiology Education by The Wisconsin Institute of Urology Urologists Team serves patients in Neenah, Oshkosh, Fond Du Lac, New London, Shawano, & Waupaca, in Northeast Wisconsin

Notice to WIU New London Patients:

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Check us out at 1370 N Shawano St. Suite A, New London, WI 54961-7943

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