We explain what the male reproductive system is and what its function is. In addition, its most common parts and diseases.
What is the male reproductive system?
When talking about the male reproductive system, reference is made to the set of internal and external organs , as well as ducts between them, which allow the man to have sex and eventually reproduce with a woman.
Unlike the female reproductive system, the male is mostly in sight, outside the body , and has the mechanisms to produce and introduce into the uterus a load of sperm (ejaculation) and thus fertilize the ovum, leading to a zygote that, over time, will become a new individual. This method of reproduction is shared by humans with most vertebrate animals .
The male reproductive system is born next to the individual but begins its hormonal and mechanical functions from puberty , stage of adolescence in which the human being matures sexually and his body is ready for reproduction. Fertile men will be throughout their lives, but their capacity for sexual interaction is limited to the possibility of erection, which decreases or is lost during the so-called old age (old age).
Male reproductive system function
As we have said, the primary biological function of the male reproductive system is reproduction . This goes through various stages that involve different organs, to the extent that sex hormones that activate the process and predispose the organism for reproduction are secreted.
Semen and sperm are produced in the testicles and prostate (10 to 14 days); The erection is given through the filling of blood from the body of the penis and, finally, after ecstasy during intercourse, the seminal content (ejaculation) is emptied through the urethra.
Parts and organs of the male reproductive system
The male reproductive system involves the following organs and ducts:
External organs (outside the body):
- Testicles . The main organ of the system is responsible for producing both male sex hormones (testosterone, mainly) and sperm (reproductive cells). It is housed in the scrotum, a wrap of tissues and skin that covers and protects them.
- Pene . It is the copulatory organ of the system, formed by three instances: the glans, which is the tip and the most sensitive region; the spongy body, tissue of which the glans is part and which holds the urethra during erection to allow semen to pass through; and the corpora cavernosa, located in the upper part of the penis, which fill with blood and provide hardness and firmness to the erect penis. It is normally covered by the foreskin, a layer of skin that is part of the scrotum. It also serves the excretory apparatus to expel urine from the body.
- Epididymis . It is in the meeting of the seminiferous ducts, and is responsible for the maturation and activation of sperm.
- Vas deferens . They connect the epididymis with the ejaculatory ducts, allowing semen to escape.
Internal organs (inside the body):
- Seminal vesicles . They produce an alkaline and viscous liquid whose purpose is to neutralize the acidity of the urethra (urine product) and safeguard the sperm. This liquid is part of 40% of semen. The vesicles are next to the prostate, behind the urinary bladder.
- Prostate . This glandular organ is exclusive to the male gender and is located behind the rectum, just at the base of the urinary bladder. It produces much of the seminal content that nourishes the sperm on their journey to the uterus and also blocks the outflow of urine during intercourse, so that the excretory and reproductive functions are not mixed.
- Urethra . The duct that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body also serves in the case of man to carry semen out.
- Bulboretrales glands . Called also Cowper’s glands, they are located under the prostate and secrete the preseminal fluid, which cleans the urethral duct and neutralizes its acidity, paving the way for ejaculation.
Diseases of the male reproductive system
Man’s reproductive system can suffer from diseases such as:
- Phimosis . It is a congenital narrowing of the foreskin, which does not allow the penis to emerge freely and usually causes pain and discomfort during sexual intercourse. It is usually remedied by circumcision.
- Cancer . Tumor malformations usually afflict the prostate and testicles particularly.
- Venereal infections . Such as the herpes virus human papillomavirus, syphilis, gonorrhea , AIDS and others, some of which produce recognizable local symptoms such as pustules, purulent discharge or difficulty urinating.
- Prostatitis . The enlargement of the prostate is usually the product of bacterial infections, but also an indicator of deeper ailments such as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia or cancer.