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The Reproductive System. Male Reproductive Functions. Produce gametes Gametes are cells with 23 chromosomes – half the usual number In males, the gametes are called spermatozoa Transport gametes Produce hormones. Male Reproductive Anatomy. Structures. Testes (testicles)

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The Reproductive System

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male reproductive functions
Male Reproductive Functions
  • Produce gametes
    • Gametes are cells with 23 chromosomes – half the usual number
    • In males, the gametes are called spermatozoa
  • Transport gametes
  • Produce hormones
  • Testes (testicles)

(Orch/i, orchid/o, test/o, testicul/o)

    • Manufacture spermatozoaand testosterone
    • Two small oval structures that develop in the abdomen and then descend into the scrotum
  • Scrotum
    • Sac that encloses and supports testicles outside of the body
  • The creation of spermatozoa
  • Occurs in the seminiferous tubules of the testes
  • Will only occur at a temperature a few degrees below body temperature
    • This requires the testes to be located outside of the pelvic cavity
  • Epididymis (Epididym/o)
    • Comma-shaped coiled tube that runs down the length of each testis
    • Stores sperm as they mature and become motile
  • Vas Deferens (vas/o)
    • Ductus deferens
    • Carry sperm from the testes into the pelvic cavity where they join with the seminal vesicles
  • Seminal Vesicles
    • Two glands located at the base of the bladder
    • Secrete a thick, yellowish substance that nourishes the sperm cells
    • Join with the vas deferens to form the ejaculatory duct which connects to the urethra
  • Prostate Gland (Prostat/o)
    • Inferior to bladder surrounding the urethra
    • Walnut-sized
    • Secretes a thick alkaline fluid into the semen that aids the motility of the sperm
      • Motility means ability to move
    • Contributes to the expulsion of semen during ejaculation
  • Bulbourethral Glands
    • Located below the prostate gland
    • Secrete fluid that lubricates and neutralizes the urethra for the passage of semen
  • Urethra
    • Tube that carries semen (and urine) through the penis to the urethral meatus
  • Penis (Pen/o, phall/i)
    • Composed of spongy erectile tissue
    • Glans penis – sensitive region at the tip
    • Prepuce (foreskin) – fold of skin that covers the glans penis
      • Removed during circumcision
medical specialties
Medical Specialties
  • Urologist
    • Specializes in diagnosing and treating disorders of the urinary tract and male reproductive tract
  • Oligospermia
    • Producing semen with a low volume of sperm
  • Aspermia
    • Producing or ejaculating no semen
  • Azoospermia
    • Having no sperm in the semen
  • Impotence (Erectile Dysfunction)
    • Inability of an adult male to achieve an erection
  • Cryptorchidism
    • Undescended testis
  • Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)
    • Benign growth of cells in the prostate
    • Causes urinary retention and urinary hesitancy
  • Prostate Cancer
    • Malignant tumour of the prostate gland
female reproductive functions
Female Reproductive Functions
  • Producing gametes
    • Female gametes are known as ova
  • Nurturing developing offspring
  • Producing hormones
  • Ovaries (ovari/o, oophor/o)
  • Two almond sized organs, held in place on each side of the uterus by ligaments
  • Contain many ovarian follicles
    • Each follicle contains an ovum that matures and then is released when the follicle ruptures (ovulation)
  • Fallopian Tubes (Salping/o)
  • Oviducts
  • Carry the ovum from the ovary to the uterus
  • Approx. 4 cm long
  • The end near the ovary opens up into the funnel shaped infundibulumsurrounded by finger-like fimbriaewhich “catch” the ovum when itleaves the ovary
  • Fertilization most often occurs inthe fallopian tubes
  • Uterus (uter/o, hyster/o, metr/o)
      • Muscular organ that receives fertilized gametes and provides the environment for developing offspring
      • Pear-shaped– held in place by broad ligament
      • Normal position
        • Antiflexion (bent forward)
        • Located between the urinary bladder and the rectum
        • Area between the uterus and the rectum is known as the cul-de-sac
  • Parts of the Uterus
    • Fundus
      • Bulging, rounded part above the entrance to the fallopian tubes
    • Corpus
      • Body or middle portion
    • Cervix Uteri (cervic/o)
      • Lower portion that extends into the vagina
  • Tissues of the Uterus
    • Endometrium
      • Inner mucosal layer that is very rich in blood vessels
    • Myometrium
      • Muscular middle layer
    • Uterine Serosa (Perimetrium)
      • Outer lining that produces a watery secretion
  • Vagina (Vagin/o, colp/o)
    • Muscular tube lined with mucosa
    • Extends from cervix to outside of the body
  • External Genitalia
    • Collectively known as the vulva (vulv/o)
    • Located below the mons pubis – a pad of tissue located over the pubic symphysis
    • Labia Majora
      • Two large fat-filled folds of skin that enclose and protect the external genitalia and urethral meatus
    • Labia Minora
      • Smaller folds located medially to the Labia Majora
Bartholin Glands
    • Two small rounded glands on either side of the external vaginal opening
    • Produce mucous secretions that lubricate the vagina
  • Clitoris
    • Mass of sensitive erectile tissue located anterior to the urethral meatus
  • Perineum
    • Area between the vaginal opening and the anus
  • Hymen
    • Thin membrane that partially covers the entrance to the vagina
  • Breasts
    • Composed of mammary glands, fatty and fibrous tissue, and lactiferous ducts
    • Produces milk in response to hormones secreted after giving birth
    • Mammary Papilla
      • Nipple – has external openings for lactiferous ducts
    • Areola
      • Darkly pigmented area around the nipple
  • Menstruation
    • Normal periodic discharge of the endometrial lining and unfertilized egg from the uterus
  • Menarche
    • Onset of menstruation at puberty
  • Ovulation
    • Ovarian follicle ruptures and the ovum (egg) leaves the ovary
  • Estrogen
    • Produced by the ovarian follicle
    • Promote the development of female secondary sexual characteristics and repair of the endometrium
  • Progesterone
    • Secreted by the corpus luteum
    • Stimulates the build up of the endometrial lining
  • Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)
    • Depression, breast tenderness and irritability that occur shortly before menstruation
  • Ending of the menstrual cycle when ova are depleted and secretion of estrogen decreases
  • Symptoms:
    • Hot flashes
    • Insomnia
    • Vaginal atrophy
gestation pregnancy
Gestation / Pregnancy
  • Fertilization
    • Occurs when a spermatozoon penetrates the ovum and releases its genetic material
    • The fertilized ovum is known as a zygote
  • Implantation
    • The zygote performs many cell divisions and then embeds into the endometrium
gestation pregnancy1
Gestation / Pregnancy
  • Embryo
    • The term for the developing offspring from the 2nd to 8th weeks of gestation
  • Fetus
    • The term for the developing offspring from the 8th week of gestation to the end of the pregnancy at approximately 40 weeks
gestation pregnancy2
Gestation / Pregnancy
  • Placenta
    • Organ that develops within the uterine wall
    • Connects to the fetus via the umbilical cord
    • Creates a barrier that keeps maternal and fetalblood separate, but allows the passage of nutrients, oxygen and wastes
gestation pregnancy3
Gestation / Pregnancy
  • Amnion and Chorion
    • Membranes that surround the developing embryo/fetus
    • Chorion – outer layer of the membrane
    • Amnion – inner layer that contains the amniotic fluid
  • Antepartum
    • Final stage of pregnancy – just before onset of labour
    • Braxton-Hicks contractions – intermittent painless uterine contractions that may occur during the antepartum period
  • Labourand childbirth
    • Occurs in three stages:
      • Dilatation – begins with contractions of the uterus and thinning and enlargement of the cervix (effacement), also involves rupture of the amniotic sac
      • Expulsion– uterine contractions become stronger and more frequent until the child is expelled through the birth canal
        • Crowning: the stage at which the head can be seen at the vaginal orifice
      • Expulsion of the placenta
  • Terms referring to the Mother
    • -gravida means pregnant female
    • -para means a woman who has produced viable offspring
      • Nulligravida – woman who has never been pregnant
      • Primigravida – woman during her first pregnancy
      • Nullipara- woman who has never borne a viable child
      • Primipara – woman who has borne one viable child (Para I)
      • Multiparous – having borne one or more viable children (separate pregnancies)
medical specialties1
Medical Specialties
  • Gynecologist
    • Specializes in diagnosing and treating disorders of the female reproductive system
  • Obstetrician
    • Specializes in providing medical care to women during pregnancy, childbirth, and afterwards
  • Neonatologist
    • Specializes in diagnosing and treating disorders of the newborn (neonate)
  • Amenorrhea
    • Absence of menses
  • Dysmenorrhea
    • Severe menstrual discomfort
  • Oligomenorrhea
    • Infrequent menstrual periods or very light flow
  • Menorrhagia
    • Abnormally heavy or long menstrual periods
  • Metrorrhagia
    • Bleeding between menstrual periods
  • Anovulation
    • Failure to ovulate
  • Endometriosis
    • Occurs when endometrial tissue is found outside the ovaries
    • Causes inflammation and scar tissue, dysmenorrhea, pain, infertility and painful intercourse


  • Fibroids
    • Benign tumours of fibrous tissue and muscle in the uterus
    • Leiomyomas
    • Symptoms:
      • Metrorrhagia
      • Pelvic pain
      • Menorrhagia
  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
    • Inflammation and infection of the organs in the pelvic region
    • Commonly caused by STI’s
    • Scarring and adhesions can lead to infertility
  • Ectopic Pregnancy
    • Implantation of the fertilized egg in a site other than the uterus
  • Preeclampsia
    • Abnormal condition in pregnancy
    • Symptoms:
      • Hypertension
      • Proteinuria
      • Edema
      • Headache
sexually transmitted diseases
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections
    • Infections that are transmitted through sexual contact
    • Can also be passed to a baby during childbirth from an infected mother
sexually transmitted diseases1
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
  • Chlamydia
    • Bacterial infection
    • Most common STD
    • Symptoms:
      • Discharge of mucus or pus
      • Pain when urinating
    • If untreated, could cause salpingitis or PID in females, which can lead to infertility
sexually transmitted diseases2
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
  • Herpes Genitalis
    • Infection with the Herpes Simplex Virus affecting the genital region
    • Symptoms
      • Burning or itching
      • Appearance of blisters and ulcers in the area of infection
    • Incurable, although it does gothrough periods with no symptoms
    • Can be transmitted to another even if no visible sores are present
sexually transmitted diseases3
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
  • Gonorrhea
    • Bacterial infection that can affect the genital tract, eye, oral cavity, rectum and joints
    • Symptoms
      • Dysuria
      • Yellow, purulent discharge
      • PID
      • May be asymptomatic in females
sexually transmitted diseases4
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
  • Syphilis
    • Bacterial infection
    • 1st stage: ulcer or chancre at the site of infection
    • 2nd stage: skin rash (esp palms and soles)
      • If left untreated, may go into a latent stage (asymptomatic, non-infectious)
    • 3rd stage: damage to heart, eyes, nervous system, brain