scrotum


scrotum
scrotal, adj.
/skroh"teuhm/, n., pl. scrota /-teuh/, scrotums. Anat.
the pouch of skin that contains the testes.
[1590-1600; < L scrotum, var. of scrautum quiver]

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 in the male reproductive system, a thin external sac of skin that is divided into two compartments; each compartment contains one of the two testes (testis), the glands that produce sperm, and one of the epididymides, where the sperm is stored. The scrotum is continuous with the skin of the lower abdomen and is located directly behind the penis and in front of the anus. The scrotal wall is a thin layer of skin lined with smooth muscle tissue (dartos fascia). The skin contains more pigment than that of surrounding areas and has many sebaceous (oil-producing) glands and sweat glands, as well as some hair. The two compartments of the scrotum are distinguished externally by a middle ridge called the raphe. Internally, the raphe connects to a muscular partition, the septum, which serves to divide the scrotum into its two areas.

      The function of the scrotum is to protect the testes and to keep them at a temperature 1–8° below the normal body temperature of 98.6° F (37° C). The scrotum thus protrudes from the body wall: moreover, it contracts from cold, exercise, or sexual stimulation and expands and relaxes when warm. When contracted, it conserves heat; while relaxed it is smooth and elongated, permitting the circulation of air that effects cooling. The muscle tone of the scrotum becomes weakened and relaxed in older men. In animals whose scrotum is always tight against the body, as in rats, boars, and stallions, the testes are cooled by the intricate blood system that surrounds them. Failure of the scrotum to cool the testes, which occurs during high fevers or, in some animals, during the hot summer months, causes temporary sterility.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • scrotum — [ skrɔtɔm ] n. m. • 1538; mot lat. ♦ Anat. Enveloppe cutanée des testicules. ⇒ 1. bourse. Adj. SCROTAL, ALE, AUX , 1538 . ● scrotum nom masculin (bas latin scrotum) Enveloppe cutanée superficielle des bourses et de leur contenu, les testicules et …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • scrotum — (n.) 1590s, from L. scrotum, cognate with O.E. scrud garment (source of SHROUD (Cf. shroud) (n.)). Isn t the sea what Algy calls it: a grey sweet mother? The snotgreen sea. The scrotum tightening sea. Epi oinopa ponton. [Joyce, Ulysses ] …   Etymology dictionary

  • Scrotum — Scro tum, n. [L.] (Anat.) The bag or pouch which contains the testicles; the cod. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Scrotum — (lat.), der Hodensack, s.u. Genitalien; daher Scrotocēle, Hodenbruch. Scrotalis, was sich auf den Hodensack bezieht; daher Scrotiforme nectarium, hodensackförmiges Nectarium. Scrotalarterien, s.u. Beckenarterie b) …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Scrōtum — (lat.), Hodensack …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Scrotum — (lat.), der Hodensack (s. Hoden) …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Scrotum — Scrotum, lat., Hodensack; Scrotokele, Hodenbruch …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • scrotum — SCRÓTUM s.n. v. scrot. Trimis de LauraGellner, 13.09.2007. Sursa: DN …   Dicționar Român

  • Scrotum — vgl. Skrotum …   Das Wörterbuch medizinischer Fachausdrücke

  • scrotum — ► NOUN (pl. scrota or scrotums) ▪ the pouch of skin containing the testicles. DERIVATIVES scrotal adjective. ORIGIN Latin …   English terms dictionary

  • scrotum — [skrōt′əm] n. pl. scrota [skrōt′ə] or scrotums [L < IE * (s)kreut > SHRED] in most male mammals, the pouch of skin holding the testicles and related structures scrotal adj …   English World dictionary


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