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Female Anatomy. The Vulva. A female’s external genitals, which include: the mons veneris – a triangular mound of tissue located over the pubic bone, covered with pubic hair, and loaded with nerve endings the labia majora – the outer lips the labia minora – the inner lips.

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Female Anatomy

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the vulva
The Vulva
  • A female’s external genitals,

which include:

the mons veneris – a triangular mound of tissue located over the pubic bone, covered with pubic hair, and loaded with nerve endings

the labia majora – the outer lips

the labia minora – the inner lips

the clitoris
The Clitoris
  • Analogous to the male penis
  • Covered by the clitoral hood
  • Fills with blood once aroused
  • Extremely sensitive – orgasmic
  • Exists to give sexual pleasure, nothing else
The hymen – tissue which covers the vaginal opening
  • Intact at marriage? – in some societies a matter of great concern
  • The perineum – an area of smooth skin located between the vagina and the anus
the vagina
The Vagina
  • A stretchable canal opening at the vulva and extending into the pelvis
  • A glove-like “potential” space
  • Three layers of tissue – all flush with blood vessels
vaginal layers
Vaginal layers
  • the mucosa – moist tissue, mucous membrane
  • Muscle tissue – concentrated around the opening
  • Fibrous tissue
  • Essential, easily overlooked, vulnerable to disruption by medications
  • Should occur within 10-30 seconds of arousal
  • Caused by vasocongestion – the engorgement of blood vessels from sexual arousal
why so important
Why so important?
  • Alkalinizes the vagina so that sperm can survive
  • Also increases sexual enjoyment
  • Otherwise - pain
the mysterious g spot
The Mysterious “G Spot”
  • A system of glands and ducts located in the front wall of the vagina
  • The female equivalent to the male prostate gland?
  • Some women report exquisite sensitivity when stimulated:
  • Arousal, orgasm, even ejaculation
  • Others do not
vaginal health concerns
Vaginal Health Concerns
  • Urinary Tract Infections
  • Common and potentially dangerous
  • Symptoms:

increased need to urinate

burning sensation when urinating

blood or pus in urine

lower pelvic pain

Diagnosis – urinalysis
  • Best treated with antibiotics
  • Cause?

1) bacteria entering through urethra usually through coitus

2) poor hygiene

  • Must be wiped from front to back
  • Washing thoroughly every day
  • Changing positions for coitus
  • Drinking lots of liquids, especially cranberry juice
  • An inflammation of the vaginal walls, usually caused by yeast or bacterial infection
  • Symptoms:

itching or irritation

strange discharge

sometimes an unpleasant odor

contributing factors
Contributing Factors
  • Diabetes
  • Antibiotics
  • Increased stress levels
  • Hormone changes
  • Coitus without sufficient lubrication
  • Panty hose – three times more infections

retain heat and moisture

prevention of vaginitis
Prevention of Vaginitis
  • Essential to treat and cure due to increased risk of cancer
  • Well balanced diet
  • Enough sleep, exercise
  • Proper hygiene – washing, wiping, cotton – as compared to panty hose
  • Avoiding feminine hygiene sprays
  • Adequate lubrication
the breasts
The Breasts
  • Secondary sexual characteristics
  • Composed of fatty tissue and the mammary (milk) gland
  • Budding is the first sign of oncoming puberty
  • Great variation with regard to sexual stimulation
  • Size depends on abundance of fatty tissue, not the mammary gland – every woman can produce plenty of milk
  • Considerable variation in size, even on the same woman
  • Also, menstruation, pregnancy, nursing, etc. influence
breast cancer
Breast Cancer
  • Mammography – an x-ray test to detect cancer
  • Can detect years before other methods
  • Significant decrease in mortality with early detection
  • Still quite imprecise – occasional misses and false positives
Some have a genetic marker which allows for early preventative measures
  • In 1998 an antiestrogen medication called tamoxifen was discovered which can help prevent breast cancer
  • Unfortunately, its use can cause significant side-effects
breast lumps
Breast Lumps
  • Usually cysts or fibroadenomas (solid, rounded tumors) and benign
  • But some are malignant tumors

11% of American women affected

190,000 diagnosed/year

40,000 die/year

risk increases with age

risk factors
Risk Factors
  • Menstruation before 12
  • No or late pregnancies
  • Never breast fed
  • Late onset of menopause
  • Obesity/lack of exercise, heavy-fat diet
  • Family history
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • But 80% have NO risk factors