Male reproductive organs: anatomy

An overview of the internal and external male sexual organs and their function

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Graphic representation of the prostate (in the red circle). Please click on the magnifying glass to enlarge it

© W & B / Jörg Neisel

The visible, so-called external male sexual organs are the penis and the scrotum. In addition, there are the internal male sexual organs:

  • Testicles
  • Epididymis
  • Seminal vesicles
  • Vas deferens
  • Prostate gland

Testicles

Every man has two testicles. They are egg-shaped and both lie in the scrotum, the left one usually a little lower (i.e. further down) than the right one. This gives the testicles more space between the thighs. The sperm cells, which are necessary for reproduction, are formed in the testicles. The testes also produce hormones - including the male sex hormone testosterone.

Epididymis

The epididymis lie on top and back of the testicles. It is a little softer than the testicle. The sperm cells mature in the epididymis.

Seminal vesicles

The seminal vesicles are two small glands that lie in the pelvis, just above the prostate. Another important part of the sperm is formed in the seminal vesicles - actually the main part. It provides the sperm with the energy they need to survive and move.

Vas deferens

The spermatic duct connects the epididymis with the urethra. During ejaculation, the sperm pass through it into the urethra.

Prostate gland

The prostate gland is a chestnut-shaped gland below the urinary bladder that surrounds the urethra. Since the rectum lies behind it, it can be felt over it. The prostate also produces some of the seminal fluid.