Scrotum and spermatic cord
After completing this study unit you will learn how to:
- Describe the structure and neurovascular supply of the scrotum.
- Identify the coverings and contents of the spermatic cord.
The scrotum is a cutaneous fibromuscular sac composed of thin, pigmented skin and multiple layers of fascia and smooth muscle. The structures contained in the scrotal sac are the testes, epididymis, and lower parts of the spermatic cord. The function of the scrotum is to allow the testis to be positioned outside of the body. This is fundamental for maintaining the optimal temperature for spermatogenesis, which is several degrees below the normal body temperature.
The testis is suspended in the scrotum by the spermatic cord. The spermatic cord is a collection of vessels, nerves, and ducts surrounded by facia, that run to and from the testis. It arises at the deep inguinal ring, passes through the inguinal canal, and exits at the superficial inguinal ring to terminate in the scrotum, at the posterior aspect of the testis. The fascial coverings of the spermatic cord are derived from the anterior abdominal wall, which is explained by the testes 'dragging' the layers of the abdominal wall during their descent into the scrotum during fetal life.
If you want to learn more about the structure of the scrotum and spermatic cord, check our video below!
Take a quiz
Now that you have watched the video about the anatomy of the scrotum and spermatic cord, solidify your knowledge by taking the following quizzes.
To challenge yourself further, customize your own quiz to get a broader collection of questions about the male reproductive organs.
Review all the structures you learned today in the gallery below!
|Contents||Testes, epididymis, lower parts of spermatic cords|
|Layers||Skin, dartos fascia (dartos muscle), external spermatic fascia, cremasteric fascia (cremaster muscle) and internal spermatic fascia|
|Function||Maintains optimal temperature for spermatogenesis|
|Contents||Ductus deferens, artery to ductus deferens, testicular artery, pampiniform plexus of veins (testicular veins), cremasteric artery and vein, genital branch of the genitofemoral nerve, autonomic testicular plexus, and lymphatic vessels|
|Coverings||Internal spermatic fascia, cremasteric fascia (cremaster muscle), external spermatic fascia|
|Function||Contains structures running to and from the testis; suspends the testis in the scrotum|