Autonomic Innervation of the Reproductive System

by James Pickering, PhD

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    00:01 So now let's turn our attention to erection, emission, and ejaculation.

    00:05 And on the screen, we can see the male genitalia.

    00:09 We can see the penis.

    00:10 We can see the prostate, testes, vas deferens, and seminal vesicles associated with the bladder.

    00:16 We can also see the contribution of the sympathetic nervous system to these organs.

    00:22 We can see the testes are supplied by the renal ganglion, which is a nod towards the embrological origin of the testes.

    00:29 And we can see the prostate, the penis, and the seminal vesicles contribution via the sympathetic nervous system of the inferior hypogastric plexus.

    00:39 We can also add in the parasympathetic control and here we have parasympathetic control coming from the pelvic splanchnic nerves.

    00:47 Again, through the inferior hypogastric plexus.

    00:50 Now the interplay between erection, emission, and ejaculation is quite a complex one.

    00:57 Parasympathetic will typically take control during the erection allow the engagement of blood within the penis.

    01:03 Whereas sympathetic will take control during ejaculation and the contraction of bulbospongiosus muscle to force the semen out for example.

    01:12 So it is quite a complex interplay between both parasympathetic and sympathetic, that control the erection and ejaculation.

    01:20 But erection is typically done by the parasympathetic nervous system, and ejaculation by way of the sympathetic nervous system.

    01:28 That similar process will happen within the female.

    01:31 But here we can see you have the lumbar splanchnic nerves while the inferior hypogastric plexus giving rise to the sympathetic input to the uterus, the uterine tubes, and the vagina.

    01:43 And again, similar to the testes, the ovarian plexus will be derived from the renal ganglion due to the origin of the ovaries.

    01:50 Again, we can finally add in the parasympathetic input, again, via the inferior hypogastric plexus with the pelvic splanchnic nerves contributing to this plexus.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Autonomic Innervation of the Reproductive System by James Pickering, PhD is from the course Lymphatics and Nerves of Abdominopelvic Region.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Lumbar splanchnic nerves
    2. Sacral splanchnic nerves
    3. Lesser splanchnic nerves
    4. Least splanchnic nerves
    5. Pelvic splanchnic nerves

    Author of lecture Autonomic Innervation of the Reproductive System

     James Pickering, PhD

    James Pickering, PhD

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