The pelvis contains the final pathways of the urogenital organs.
The paired (proximal) structures receive a unilateral neurovascular supply while the unpaired (distal) structures have a bilateral supply. This has clinical implications*. The information gained
from digital anal and rectal examination* should not be
underestimated. There are four pelvic regions*.
The pelvic male urogenital system consists of deep and superficial
(accessible but exposed) structures. The testis 'descent*'
during development forms a long spermatic cord* - they
are 'proximal' paired organs that migrate. The migration also has
significant clinical implications (such as failure of normal development).
A long curved urethra is protective against infection but presents
difficulties with catheterization and trauma. Prostatic narrowing
with age contributes to this.
The female pelvic urogenital system both parallels and differs
from the male. Visceral principles remain the same but there is
less external accessibility to structures. The decrease in vulnerability may
raise the prospect of hidden or missed diagnoses. Vaginal examination* adds
a new diagnostic dimension. The short straight female urethra increases
risk of infection but is easily catheterized.
The multipotent* development and lengthy 'descent' of the testis make it a common source of anatomical and pathological
variation*. Structures migrating in development have a
higher possibility of positional variation and functional impairment.
Common positional variations are: