Contents 1 Structure 1.1 Layers 1.2 Support 1.2.1 Major ligaments 1.3 Axes 1.4 Position 1.5 Blood supply 1.6 Nerve supply 1.7 Development 2 Function 3 Clinical significance 4 Other animals 5 Additional images 6 See also 7 References 8 External links


Structure[edit] The uterus is located within the pelvic region immediately behind and almost overlying the bladder, and in front of the sigmoid colon. The human uterus is pear-shaped and about 7.6 cm (3 in.) long, 4.5 cm broad (side to side) and 3.0 cm thick.[1][2] A typical adult uterus weighs about 60 grams. The uterus can be divided anatomically into four regions: The fundus, corpus (body), cervix and the internal os. The cervix protrudes into the vagina. The uterus is held in position within the pelvis by of endopelvic fascia, which are called ligaments. These ligaments include the pubocervical, transverse cervical ligaments or cardinal ligaments, and the uterosacral ligaments. It is covered by a sheet-like fold of peritoneum, the broad ligament.[3] Diagram showing regions of the uterus From outside to inside, regions of the uterus include: Cervix uteri – "neck of uterus" External orifice of the uterus Cervical canal Internal orifice of the uterus Body (Latin: Corpus) Uterine cavity Fundus (uterus) Layers[edit] Uterine wall thickness (cm)[4] Location Mean (mm) Range (mm) Anterior wall 23 17 - 25 Posterior wall 21 15 - 25 Fundus 20 15 - 22 Isthmus 10 8 - 22 The uterus has three layers, which together form the uterine wall. From innermost to outermost, these layers are as follows: Endometrium is the inner epithelial layer, along with its mucous membrane, of the mammalian uterus. It has a basal layer and a functional layer; the functional layer thickens and then is sloughed during the menstrual cycle or estrous cycle. During pregnancy, the uterine glands and blood vessels in the endometrium further increase in size and number. Vascular spaces fuse and become interconnected, forming the placenta, which supplies oxygen and nutrition to the embryo and fetus.[5][6] Commensal organisms are present in the uterus and form the uterine microbiome.[7][8][9][10] Myometrium The uterus mostly consists of smooth muscle, known as "myometrium." The innermost layer of myometrium is known as the junctional zone, which becomes thickened in adenomyosis.[11] Perimetrium Serous layer of visceral peritonium. It covers the outer surface of the uterus.[12] Vertical section of mucous membrane of human uterus. Support[edit] Uterus covered by the broad ligament The uterus is primarily supported by the pelvic diaphragm, perineal body and the urogenital diaphragm. Secondarily, it is supported by ligaments and the peritoneal ligament the broad ligament of uterus.[13] Major ligaments[edit] It is held in place by several peritoneal ligaments, of which the following are the most important (there are two of each): Name From To Uterosacral ligament Posterior cervix Anterior face of sacrum Cardinal ligaments Side of the cervix Ischial spines Pubocervical ligament[13] Side of the cervix Pubic symphysis Axes[edit] Normally the uterus lies in anteversion & anteflexion. In most women, the long axis of the uterus is bent forward on the long axis of the vagina, against the urinary bladder. This position is referred to as anteversion of the uterus. Furthermore, the long axis of the body of the uterus is bent forward at the level of the internal os with the long axis of the cervix. This position is termed anteflexion of the uterus.[14] Uterus assumes anteverted position in 50% women, retroverted position in 25% women and rest have midposed uterus.[1] Position[edit] The uterus is in the middle of the pelvic cavity in frontal plane (due to ligamentum latum uteri). The fundus does not surpass the linea terminalis, while the vaginal part of the cervix does not extend below interspinal line. The uterus is mobile and moves posteriorly under the pressure of a full bladder, or anteriorly under the pressure of a full rectum. If both are full, it moves upwards. Increased intraabdominal pressure pushes it downwards. The mobility is conferred to it by musculo-fibrous apparatus that consists of suspensory and sustentacular part. Under normal circumstances the suspensory part keeps the uterus in anteflexion and anteversion (in 90% of women) and keeps it "floating" in the pelvis. The meaning of these terms are described below: Distinction More common Less common Position tipped "Anteverted": Tipped forward "Retroverted": Tipped backwards Position of fundus "Anteflexed": Fundus is pointing forward relative to the cervix "Retroflexed": Fundus is pointing backwards Sustentacular part supports the pelvic organs and comprises the larger pelvic diaphragm in the back and the smaller urogenital diaphragm in the front. The pathological changes of the position of the uterus are: retroversion/retroflexion, if it is fixed hyperanteflexion – tipped too forward; most commonly congenital, but may be caused by tumors anteposition, retroposition, lateroposition – the whole uterus is moved; caused by parametritis or tumors elevation, descensus, prolapse rotation (the whole uterus rotates around its longitudinal axis), torsion (only the body of the uterus rotates around) inversion In cases where the uterus is "tipped", also known as retroverted uterus, women may have symptoms of pain during sexual intercourse, pelvic pain during menstruation, minor incontinence, urinary tract infections, fertility difficulties,[15] and difficulty using tampons. A pelvic examination by a doctor can determine if a uterus is tipped.[16] Blood supply[edit] Vessels of the uterus and its appendages, rear view. Schematic diagram of uterine arterial vasculature seen as a cross-section through the myometrium and endometrium. The uterus is supplied by arterial blood both from the uterine artery and the ovarian artery. Another anastomotic branch may also supply the uterus from anastomosis of these two arteries. Nerve supply[edit] Afferent nerves supplying uterus are T11 and T12. Sympathetic supply is from hypogastric plexus and ovarian plexus. Parasympathetic supply is from second, third and fourth sacral nerves. Development[edit] Bilateral Müllerian ducts form during early fetal life. In males, MIF secreted from the testes leads to their regression. In females, these ducts give rise to the Fallopian tubes and the uterus. In humans the lower segments of the two ducts fuse to form a single uterus, however, in cases of uterine malformations this development may be disturbed. The different uterine forms in various mammals are due to various degrees of fusion of the two Müllerian ducts. Various congenital conditions of the uterus can develop in utero. Though uncommon some of these are a double uterus, didelphic uterus, bicornate uterus and others.[17]


Function[edit] The reproductive function of the uterus is to accept a fertilized ovum which passes through the utero-tubal junction from the fallopian tube (uterine tube). The fertilized ovum divides to become a blastocyst, which implants into the endometrium, and derives nourishment from blood vessels which develop exclusively for this purpose. The fertilized ovum becomes an embryo, attaches to a wall of the uterus, creates a placenta, and develops into a fetus (gestates) until childbirth. Due to anatomical barriers such as the pelvis, the uterus is pushed partially into the abdomen due to its expansion during pregnancy. Even during pregnancy the mass of a human uterus amounts to only about a kilogram (2.2 pounds). The uterus also plays a role in sexual response, by directing blood flow to the pelvis and ovaries, and to the external genitals, including the vagina, labia, and clitoris.


Clinical significance[edit] A hysterectomy is the surgical removal of the uterus which may be carried out for a number of reasons including the ridding of tumours both benign and malignant. A complete hysterectomy involves the removal of the body, fundus, and cervix of the uterus. A partial hysterectomy may just involve the removal of the uterine body while leaving the cervix intact. It is the most commonly performed gynecological surgical procedure. Some pathological states include: Prolapse of the uterus Carcinoma of the cervix – malignant neoplasm Carcinoma of the uterus – malignant neoplasm Fibroids – benign neoplasms Adenomyosis – ectopic growth of endometrial tissue within the myometrium Endometritis, infection at the uterine cavity. Pyometra – infection of the uterus, most commonly seen in dogs Uterine malformations mainly congenital malformations including Uterine Didelphys, bicornuate uterus and septate uterus. It also includes congenital absence of the uterus Rokitansky syndrome Asherman's syndrome, also known as intrauterine adhesions occurs when the basal layer of the endometrium is damaged by instrumentation (e.g. D&C) or infection (e.g. endometrial tuberculosis) resulting in endometrial scarring followed by adhesion formation which partially or completely obliterates the uterine cavity. Hematometra, which is accumulation of blood within the uterus. Transvaginal ultrasonography showing a uterine fluid accumulation in a postmenopausal woman. Accumulation of fluids other than blood or of unknown constitution. One study came to the conclusion that postmenopausal women with endometrial fluid collection on gynecologic ultrasonography should undergo endometrial biopsy if the endometrial lining is thicker than 3 mm or the endometrial fluid is echogenic. In cases of a lining 3 mm or less and clear endometrial fluid, endometrial biopsy was not regarded to be necessary, but endocervical curettage to rule out endocervical cancer was recommended.[18] Myometritis – inflammation of the muscular uterine wall.[19]


Other animals[edit] Most animals that lay eggs, such as birds and reptiles, including most ovoviviparous species, have an oviduct instead of a uterus. However, recent research into the biology of the viviparous (not merely ovoviviparous) skink Trachylepis ivensi has revealed development of a very close analogue to eutherian mammalian placental development.[20] In monotremes, mammals which lay eggs, namely the platypus and the echidnas, either the term uterus or oviduct is used to describe the same organ, but the egg does not develop a placenta within the mother and thus does not receive further nourishment after formation and fertilization. Marsupials have two uteri, each of which connect to a lateral vagina and which both use a third, middle "vagina" which functions as the birth canal.[21] Marsupial embryos form a choriovitelline placenta (which can be thought of as something between a monotreme egg and a "true" placenta), in which the egg's yolk sac supplies a large part of the embryo's nutrition but also attaches to the uterine wall and takes nutrients from the mother's bloodstream. However, bandicoots also have a rudimentary chorioallantoic placenta, similar to those of placental mammals. The fetus usually develops fully in placental mammals and only partially in marsupials including kangaroos and opossums. In marsupials the uterus forms as a duplex organ of two uteri. In monotremes (egg-laying mammals) such as the platypus, the uterus is duplex and rather than nurturing the embryo, secretes the shell around the egg. It is essentially identical with the shell gland of birds and reptiles, with which the uterus is homologous.[22] In mammals, the four main forms of the uterus are: duplex, bipartite, bicornuate and simplex.[23] Duplex   There are two wholly separate uteri, with one fallopian tube each. Found in marsupials (such as kangaroos, Tasmanian devils, opossums, etc.), rodents (such as mice, rats, and guinea pigs), and lagomorpha (rabbits and hares). Bipartite   The two uteri are separate for most of their length, but share a single cervix. Found in ruminants (deer, moose, elk etc.), hyraxes, cats, and horses. Bicornuate  The upper parts of the uterus remain separate, but the lower parts are fused into a single structure. Found in dogs, pigs, elephants, whales, dolphins, and tarsiers, and strepsirrhine primates among others. Simplex   The entire uterus is fused into a single organ. Found in higher primates (including humans and chimpanzees) . Occasionally, some individual females (including humans) may have a bicornuate uterus, a uterine malformation where the two parts of the uterus fail to fuse completely during fetal development. Two uteri usually form initially in a female and usually male fetus, and in placental mammals they may partially or completely fuse into a single uterus depending on the species. In many species with two uteri, only one is functional. Humans and other higher primates such as chimpanzees, usually have a single completely fused uterus, although in some individuals the uteri may not have completely fused.


Additional images[edit] Schematic frontal view of female anatomy Uterus and uterine tubes. Sectional plan of the gravid uterus in the third and fourth month. Fetus in utero, between fifth and sixth months. Female pelvis and its contents, seen from above and in front. The arteries of the internal organs of generation of the female, seen from behind. Median sagittal section of female pelvis. (Description located on image page) Uterus


See also[edit] Menopause Artificial uterus Social uterus


References[edit] ^ a b Manual of Obstetrics. (3rd ed.). Elsevier 2011. pp. 1–16. ISBN 9788131225561. ^ Donita,, D'Amico, (2015). Health & physical assessment in nursing. Barbarito, Colleen, (3rd ed.). Boston: Pearson. p. 645. ISBN 9780133876406. OCLC 894626609.  ^ Gray's Anatomy for Students, 2nd edition ^ Nandita Palshetkar; Rishma Dhillon Pai; Hrishikesh D Pai (2012-09-30). Textbook of Hysteroscopy. JP Medical Ltd. pp. 135–. ISBN 978-93-5025-781-4.  ^ Blue Histology - Female Reproductive System. School of Anatomy and Human Biology — The University of Western Australia Accessed 20061228 20:35 ^ Guyton AC, Hall JE, eds. (2006). "Chapter 81 Female Physiology Before Pregnancy and Female Hormones". Textbook of Medical Physiology (11th ed.). Elsevier Saunders. pp. 1018ff. ISBN 9780721602400.  ^ Franasiak, Jason M.; Scott, Richard T. (2015). "Reproductive tract microbiome in assisted reproductive technologies". Fertility and Sterility. 104 (6): 1364–1371. doi:10.1016/j.fertnstert.2015.10.012. ISSN 0015-0282. PMID 26597628.  ^ Verstraelen, Hans; Vilchez-Vargas, Ramiro; Desimpel, Fabian; Jauregui, Ruy; Vankeirsbilck, Nele; Weyers, Steven; Verhelst, Rita; De Sutter, Petra; Pieper, Dietmar H.; Van De Wiele, Tom (2016). "Characterisation of the human uterine microbiome in non-pregnant women through deep sequencing of the V1-2 region of the 16S rRNA gene". PeerJ. 4: e1602. doi:10.7717/peerj.1602. ISSN 2167-8359. PMC 4730988 . PMID 26823997.  ^ Mor, Gil; Kwon, Ja-Young (2015). "Trophoblast-microbiome interaction: a new paradigm on immune regulation". American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. 213 (4): S131–S137. doi:10.1016/j.ajog.2015.06.039. ISSN 0002-9378. PMID 26428492.  ^ Payne, Matthew S.; Bayatibojakhi, Sara (2014). "Exploring Preterm Birth as a Polymicrobial Disease: An Overview of the Uterine Microbiome". Frontiers in Immunology. 5: 595. doi:10.3389/fimmu.2014.00595. ISSN 1664-3224. PMC 4245917 . PMID 25505898.  ^ "NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms". National Cancer Institute. Retrieved 2017-12-27.  ^ Ross, Michael H.; Pawlina, Wojciech. Histology, a text and atlas (Sixth ed.). p. 848.  ^ a b The Pelvis University College Cork Archived from the original on 2008-02-27 ^ Snell, Clinical Anatomy by regions, 8th edition ^ "Retroverted Uterus: What it is & How it Affects Pregnancy". www.womens-health.co.uk.  ^ Tipped Uterus:Tilted Uterus AmericanPregnancy.org. Accessed 25 March 2011 ^ "Surgical Correction of Uterovaginal Anomalies | GLOWM". www.glowm.com. Retrieved 2017-12-27.  ^ Takacs P, De Santis T, Nicholas MC, Verma U, Strassberg R, Duthely L (November 2005). "Echogenic endometrial fluid collection in postmenopausal women is a significant risk factor for disease". J Ultrasound Med. 24 (11): 1477–81. PMID 16239648.  ^ "Myometritis - Medical Definition from MediLexicon". www.medilexicon.com.  ^ Blackburn, D. G.; Flemming, A. F. (2011). "Invasive implantation and intimate placental associations in a placentotrophic African lizard, Trachylepis ivensi (scincidae)". Journal of Morphology. 273: 137–59. doi:10.1002/jmor.11011. PMID 21956253.  ^ Ronald M. Nowak (7 April 1999). Walker's Mammals of the World. JHU Press. ISBN 978-0-8018-5789-8.  ^ Romer, Alfred Sherwood; Parsons, Thomas S. (1977). The Vertebrate Body. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Holt-Saunders International. pp. 390–392. ISBN 0-03-910284-X.  ^ Lewitus, Eric, and Christophe Soligo. "Life-history correlates of placental structure in eutherian evolution." Evolutionary Biology 38.3 (2011): 287-305.


External links[edit] Look up womb or uterus in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. Gray's s268 Anatomy photo:43:01-0102 at the SUNY Downstate Medical Center – "The Female Pelvis: Organs in the Female and male Pelvis in situ" Encyclopedia.com Uterus Anatomy Uterus Pregnancy v t e Female reproductive system Internal Adnexa Ovaries Follicles corpus hemorrhagicum luteum albicans Theca of follicle externa interna Follicular antrum Follicular fluid Corona radiata Zona pellucida Membrana granulosa Perivitelline space Other Germinal epithelium Tunica albuginea cortex Cumulus oophorus Stroma Medulla Fallopian tubes Isthmus Ampulla Infundibulum Fimbria Ostium Ligaments Ovarian ligament Suspensory ligament Wolffian vestiges Gartner's duct Epoophoron Vesicular appendages of epoophoron Paroophoron Uterus Regions Body Uterine cavity Fundus Cervix External orifice Cervical canal Internal orifice Supravaginal portion Vaginal portion Uterine horns Layers Endometrium epithelium Myometrium Perimetrium Parametrium Ligaments Round ligament Broad ligament Cardinal ligament Uterosacral ligament Pubocervical ligament General Uterine glands Vagina Fossa of vestibule of vagina Vaginal fornix Hymen External Vulva Labia Mons pubis Labia majora Anterior commissure Posterior commissure Pudendal cleft Labia minora Frenulum of labia minora Frenulum of clitoris Vulval vestibule Interlabial sulci Bulb of vestibule Vaginal orifice vestibular glands/ducts Bartholin's glands/Bartholin's ducts Skene's glands/Skene's ducts Clitoris Crus of clitoris Corpus cavernosum Clitoral glans Hood Urethra Urethral crest Other G-spot Urethral sponge Perineal sponge Authority control GND: 4019493-0 NDL: 00570983 Retrieved from "https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Uterus&oldid=818108094" Categories: Organs (anatomy)PelvisMammal female reproductive systemHuman female reproductive systemUterusWomen's healthHidden categories: Medicine infobox template using GraySubject or GrayPageArticles containing Latin-language textWikipedia articles with GND identifiers


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