Histology of the canine urethra. I. Morphometry of the female urethra

W. Craig Cullen, Thomas F Fletcher, William E. Bradley

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Urinary bladders and urethrae were collected from six adult and two juvenile female dogs. Five urethral regions and the neck and body of the bladder were sampled. Volume fractions for connective tissue including elastic fibers, smooth and striated muscle, and epithelium were obtained by projecting section images onto an array of points and computing the number of points overlying a tissue constituent per total points overlying the tissue section. Smooth muscle occupied approximately half the volume of the bladder wall, one‐third the volume of the vesical neck, and one‐fourth the volume of the proximal urethra. Striated muscle was present in the distal half of the urethra, where the total muscle coat occupied about one‐third of the urethral wall volume. Smooth muscle was practically absent in the terminal urethra, where the striated urethralis muscle encircles urethra and vagina in common. Epithelial area and lumen perimeter were not significantly different along the length of the urethra except that urethral epithelium was significantly thicker adjacent to the vesical neck. In terms of histological proportions, the vesical neck was intermediate between the body of the bladder and the proximal urethra.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-186
Number of pages10
JournalThe Anatomical Record
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1981


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