The female reproductive system is a well-coordinated group of organs that exist for the sole purpose of preparing for and maintaining a normal pregnancy.
Under usual circumstances for women in the child-bearing years, the body goes through a series of monthly hormonal changes that cause an egg follicle to develop in the ovary, and the uterine lining to prepare for a potential pregnancy. If pregnancy does not occur, the lining and egg are removed through menses, or a woman’s period. If pregnancy does occur, the reproductive system is responsible for maintaining the pregnancy throughout the 9 months.
Here are the major organs that make up the internal anatomy of the female reproductive system.
- Vagina – elastic, muscular tube that connects the outside of the body to the cervix
- Cervix – the lower part of the uterus that connects the vagina to the uterus
- Uterus – a small, pear-shaped organ that maintains the necessary environment for a pregnancy to occur
- Fallopian tubes – relays the egg from the ovary to the uterus after ovulation
- Ovaries – where an egg matures each month; also responsible for responding to and producing key hormones
Here are the structures that make up the external anatomy of the female reproductive system.
Hormones play a major role in the regulation of the menstrual cycle and in the maintenance and growth/development of a pregnancy. The following are the hormones which play the largest role in female health and sexuality.