What is the anatomy of the female pelvic reproductive organs relevant to salpingo-oophorectomy?

Updated: Feb 06, 2018
  • Author: Stacie M Ward, MD; Chief Editor: Christine Isaacs, MD  more...
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Answer

Answer

The ovaries are the female pelvic reproductive organs that house the ova and are also responsible for the production of sex hormones. They are paired organs located on either side of the uterus within the broad ligament below the uterine (fallopian) tubes. The ovary is within the ovarian fossa, a space that is bound by the external iliac vessels, obliterated umbilical artery, and the ureter. The ovaries are responsible for housing and releasing ova, or eggs, necessary for reproduction. At birth, a female has approximately 1-2 million eggs, but only 300 of these eggs will ever become mature and be released for the purpose of fertilization.

The uterine tubes are uterine appendages located bilaterally at the superior portion of the uterine cavity. These tubes exit the uterus through an area referred to as the cornua, forming a connection between the endometrial and peritoneal cavities. Each uterine tube is approximately 10 cm in length and 1 cm in diameter and is situated within the mesosalpinx. The mesosalpinx is a fold in the broad ligament. The distal portion of the uterine tube ends in an orientation encircling the ovary. The primary function of the uterine tubes is to transport sperm toward the egg, which is released by the ovary, and to then allow passage of the fertilized egg back to the uterus for implantation.

For more information about the relevant anatomy, see Ovary Anatomy and Uterine Tube (Fallopian Tube) Anatomy.


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