The urethra is the conduit belonging to the urogenital system that connects the bladder with the urethral orifice . The urethra performs distinct functions, which differ significantly between the two sexes. In the woman its only role is to allow the expulsion of the urine outside the body, in the man the urethra is concerned not only with the transport of the urine towards the outside of the organism, but also with the transport of the sperm . Its length varies according to the gender, while the average diameter of this channel remains about 10 mm in any case.
What is the urethra?
The urethra is the conduit of the urogenital system that connects the bladder with the urethral orifice (meatus). In women the urethra is almost rectilinear and joins the bladder with the urethral meatus . It has a reduced length, of only 3 or 4 centimeters and its opening is located between the clitoris and the vaginal orifice.
In man the urethra has a different morphology. First, it is almost three times as long as the female one . Second, it is broken down into the anterior and posterior urethra . The anterior part of the urethra, about 8 centimeters long, passes through the scrotum and penis and flows into the external urinary meatus located on the end of the glans penis. Throughout its length, the anterior urethra is surrounded by a spongy body, a highly vascularized tissue which has a primary role in the erection of the male sexual organ. The prostatic urethra, i.e. the posterior part of the urethra, is instead 4 cm long and is surrounded by the prostate. In this region of the urethra the ejaculatory ducts and prostate ducts are inserted , pouring the sperm inside.
What is the urethra for?
The urethra performs different functions in the organism of man and woman. In man , in addition to allowing the elimination of urine, the urethra also participates in the transport of sperm, which is deposited in it by the ejaculatory and prostatic ducts that enter it. In this case, the urethra is also the final part of the spermatic pathways . In women, on the other hand, the primary task of the urethra is to encourage the elimination of urine originating from the kidneys . So, in women the urethra represents only the last part of the urinary tract.