uterus

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uterus

 [u´ter-us] (pl. u´teri) (L.)
the hollow muscular organ in female mammals in which the zygote (fertilized ovum) normally becomes embedded and in which the developing embryo and fetus is nourished; in humans it is normally about the size and shape of a pear. Called also metra and womb.



The upper part of the uterus, or fundus uteri, is broad and flattened; the middle part (body), or corpus uteri, is large and open; and the lower part, or cervix uteri, is narrow and tubular and opens downward into the vagina. Two fallopian tubes enter the uterus at the upper end, one on each side. The walls of the uterus are composed of muscle, and its lining is mucous membrane. The muscular substance of the uterus is called the myometrium, and the inner lining is called the endometrium. Between puberty and menopause, the lining goes through a monthly cycle of growth and discharge, known as the menstrual cycle. menstruation is the time in the cycle when the tissue prepared by the uterus for a possible embryo or fertilized egg is unused and passes out through the vagina.

The menstrual cycle is interrupted by pregnancy when a mature ovum is fertilized by a spermatozoon. Fertilization usually takes place in the fallopian tube; the fertilized ovum continues moving along the tube and comes to rest in the uterus, where it implants in the endometrium. The endometrium then serves to anchor the placenta, which filters nutrients from the mother's blood into the blood of the growing fetus. (See also reproduction and female reproductive organs.)
Disorders of the Uterus. The main organs of the female reproductive system, the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries, are connected to each other by ligaments that normally hold each in its proper place. Occasionally childbirth causes displacement of the uterus. The ligaments may stretch and weaken enough to permit the uterus to bulge into the vagina. This is called a prolapsed uterus. The uterus is also subject to cancer as well as to benign growths in the uterine wall, called leiomyomas.
Uterus and uterine tubes. From Applegate, 2000.
uterus didel´phys the existence of two distinct uteri in the same individual; called also didelphia and uterus duplex.
duplex uterus (uterus du´plex) uterus didelphys.

u·ter·us

, pl.

u·ter·i

(yū'tĕr-ŭs, ū'ter-ī), [TA]
The hollow muscular organ in which the ootid is developed into the embryo and fetus; it is about 7.5-cm long in a nonpregnant woman; consists of a main portion (body) with an elongated lower part (cervix), at the extremity of which is the opening (external os). The upper rounded portion of the uterus, opposite the os, is the fundus, at each extremity of which is the horn marking the part where the uterine tube joins the uterus and through which the morula reaches the uterine cavity after leaving the uterine tube. The organ is passively supported in the pelvic cavity by the vagina and paracolpium and by the anteflexion and anteversion of the normal uterus, which places its mass superior to the bladder; it is actively supported by the tonic and phasic contraction of the muscles of the pelvic floor.
Synonym(s): metra, womb
[L.]

uterus

/uter·us/ (u´ter-us) pl. u´teri   [L.] the hollow muscular organ in female mammals in which the blastocyst normally becomes embedded and in which the developing embryo and fetus is nourished. Its cavity opens into the vagina below and into a uterine tube on either side.
bicornuate uterus  one with two horns, or cornua.
uterus didel´phys  the existence of two distinct uteri in the same individual.
gravid uterus  one containing a developing fetus.
septate uterus  a uterus whose cavity is divided into two parts by a septum.
unicornuate uterus  one with a single horn, or cornu.

uterus

(yo͞o′tər-əs)
n. pl. uteri (yo͞o′tə-rī′) or uteruses
1. A hollow muscular organ located in the pelvic cavity of female mammals in which the fertilized egg implants and develops. Also called womb.
2. A corresponding part in other animals.

uterus

[yo̅o̅′tərəs]
Etymology: L, womb
the hollow pear-shaped internal female organ of reproduction in which the fertilized ovum is implanted and the fetus develops and from which the decidua of menses flows. Its anterior surface lies on the superior surface of the bladder, separated by a fold of peritoneum, the vesicouterine pouch. Its posterior surface, also covered with peritoneum, is adjacent to the sigmoid colon and some of the coils of the small intestine. The uterus is composed of three layers: the endometrium, the myometrium, and the parametrium. The endometrium lines the uterus and becomes thicker and more vascular in pregnancy and during the second half of the menstrual cycle under the influence of the hormone progesterone. The myometrium is the muscular layer of the organ. Its muscle fibers wrap around the uterus obliquely, laterally, and longitudinally. The muscle fibers contract during childbirth to expel the fetus. After childbirth the meshlike network of fibers contracts again, creating a mass of natural ligatures that stops the flow of blood from the large blood vessels supplying the placenta. The parametrium is the outermost layer of the uterus. It is composed of serous connective tissue and extends laterally into the broad ligament. In the adult the organ measures about 7.5 cm long and 5 cm wide at its fundus and weighs approximately 40 g. During pregnancy it is able to grow to many times its usual size, almost entirely by cellular hypertrophy.
enlarge picture
Uterus

u·ter·us

, pl. uteri (yū'tĕr-ŭs, -ī) [TA]
The hollow muscular organ in which the blastocyst develops into a fetus; it consists of a main portion (body) with an elongated lower part (cervix), at the extremity of which is the opening (os). The upper rounded portion of the uterus, opposite the os, is the fundus, at each extremity of which is the horn marking the part where the uterine tube joins the uterus and through which the morula reaches the uterine cavity after leaving the uterine tube. The organ is supported in the pelvic cavity by the broad ligaments, round ligaments, cardinal ligaments, and rectouterine and vesicouterine folds or ligaments.
Synonym(s): metra, womb.
[L.]

uterus

(ut'e-rus) [L. uterus, womb]
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UTERUS: Uterus and its ligaments seen laparoscopically (×1/3)
The reproductive organ for containing and nourishing the embryo and fetus from the time the fertilized egg is implanted to when the fetus is born. Synonym: womb See: illustration; genitalia, female for illus.

Anatomy

The uterus is a muscular, hollow, pear-shaped organ situated in the midpelvis between the sacrum and the pubic symphysis. Before child-bearing, it is about 3 in. (7.5 cm) long, 2 in. (5 cm) wide, and 1 in. ( 2.5 cm) thick. Its upper surface is covered by the perimetrium, and it is supported by the pelvic diaphragm supplemented by the two broad ligaments, two round ligaments, and two uterosacral ligaments. It is usually tilted forward over the top of the urinary bladder. The upper portion of the uterus, between the openings of the fallopian tubes, is the fundus; the large central portion is the body; and the narrow lower end is the cervix, which projects into the vagina. The cavity of the uterus is widest in the fundus. The canal of the cervix is narrow, opens into the uterine cavity at the internal os, and into the vagina at the external os.

The wall of the uterus consists of the outer perimetrium, middle myometrium, and inner endometrium. The uterine and ovarian arteries supply blood to the uterus.

Positions

Anteflexion: The uterus bends forward. Anteversion: The fundus is displaced forward toward the pubis, while the cervix is tilted up toward the sacrum. Retroflexion: The uterus bends backward at the junction of the body and the cervix. Retroversion: The uterus inclines backward with retention of the normal curve; this position is the opposite of anteversion.

See: hysterectomy; pregnancy

uterus acollis

A uterus without a cervix.

uterus arcuatus

A uterus with a depressed arched fundus.

uterus bicornis

A uterus in which the fundus is divided into two parts.

uterus biforis

A uterus in which the external os is divided into two parts by a septum.

uterus bilocularis

A uterus in which the cavity is divided into two parts by a partition.

bipartite uterus

A uterus in which the body is partially divided by a median septum.

uterus cordiformis

A heart-shaped uterus.

Couvelaire uterus

See: Couvelaire uterus

uterus didelphys

Double uterus.

double uterus

A congenital anomaly in which abnormalities in the formation of the müllerian ducts result in a duplication of the uterus, a uterus with a divided cavity, or sometimes, two copies of the cervix or vagina. Synonym: dimetria; uterus didelphys

uterus duplex

A double uterus resulting from failure of union of müllerian ducts.

fetal uterus

A uterus that is retarded in development and possesses an extremely long cervical canal.

gravid uterus

A pregnant uterus.

host uterus

The uterus of a woman who serves as a surrogate mother for a couple who want their fertilized egg carried to term.

uterus masculinus

The prostatic utricle.

uterus parvicollis

A normal uterus with a disproportionately small cervix.

pubescent uterus

An adult uterus that resembles that of a prepubertal female.

tipped uterus

Malposition of the uterus, and for symptoms thought to arise from that condition..

uterus unicornis

A uterus possessing only one lateral half and usually having only one uterine tube. About 20% to 30% of women who have this structural abnormality also experience repeated spontaneous abortion during early pregnancy.

uterus

The female organ in which the fetus grows and is nourished until birth. The uterus is a hollow, muscular organ, about 8 cm long in the non-pregnant state, situated at the upper end of the VAGINA and lying behind and above the URINARY BLADDER and in front of the RECTUM. It is suspended by LIGAMENTS from the walls of the pelvis. The lining of the uterus is called the endometrium. Under the influence of hormones from the ovaries this thickens progressively until shed during menstruation. In pregnancy, the uterus expands considerably with the growth of the fetus until it rises almost to the top of the abdominal cavity.

uterus

the enlarged posterior portion of the OVIDUCT in which the embryo implants and develops in VIVIPAROUS (1) species. The human uterus is also called the womb.

Uterus

A muscular, hollow organ of the female reproductive tract. The uterus contains and nourishes the embryo and fetus from the time the fertilized egg is implanted until birth.

uterus

the hollow muscular organ in female mammals in which the fertilized ovum normally becomes embedded and in which the developing embryo and fetus is nourished. It is composed of two horns, a body and a cervix; the cervix opens caudally into the vagina. Two uterine tubes enter the uterus at the upper end, one on each side. The walls of the uterus are composed of muscle; its lining is mucous membrane. The muscular substance of the uterus is called the myometrium; the inner lining is called endometrium.

uterus didelphys, duplex uterus
complete duplication of the cervix and uterus.
uterus masculinus
see müllerian duct.
simple uterus
a uterus with a single large body, two small horns, and a single cervix as found in primates.
uterus unicornis
one horn, except usually for its apex, is completely missing because of a developmental defect.

Patient discussion about uterus

Q. Is it safe to have sex with a woman with cancer of the uterus? My 45-years old wife was told she have cancer in the uterus, and will have an operation soon. Meanwhile, should we use a condom during sex? Can the tumor pass from her to me (like AIDS or HPV)?

A. unless the cancer has lots of bleeding, you don't need to use condoms.
but if your wife would undergo an operation, maybe you need to be off-of-that-sex 1-2 days prior to operation day, just to make sure there's no super infection that will bother the operation plan.

Q. I had my uterus removed in 2000, what exercises are effective for firming the flab that we women deal with? exercises to firm muscles of tummy after uterus is removed

A. pelvic muscles exercise is very important in order to avoid unpleasant situations and procedures. i once had the pleasure of seeing a surgery done in order to fix a complication of weak pelvic muscles.
not a very nice surgery.

here are some sites that give nice exercises:
http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/women/reproductive/gynecologic/642.html

http://www.seekwellness.com/incontinence/how_to_do_pelvic_muscle_exercise.htm

Q. Can the fetus hear through the womb? My wife wants to play music to our baby and put earphones on her pregnant stomach so he can hear it. Can he really hear the music?

A. Yes, he can hear. Studies show that from the 5th month of pregnancy, nice and calm music can sooth the fetus. You can expose your baby to sounds, music and different tunes throughout your pregnancy.

More discussions about uterus