The male reproductive system, although different from the female reproductive system is still as complicated as the latter. There are many organs that make up the male reproductive system. The most important function of the male reproductive system is to produce the seminal fluid. This seminal fluid helps carry the sperms outside the body after ejaculation. This seminal fluid is produced in the internal organ of the male reproductive system, called the seminal vesicles. The seminal vesicle is also called glandula vesiculosae or vesicular glands. The seminal vesicle function is quite simple, but very important. In this Bodytomy article, we shall study the function of the seminal vesicle in detail.
Where are the Seminal Vesicles Located?
Seminal vesicles are attached to the vas deferens, which are long, muscular tubes that carry mature sperms to the urethra for ejaculation. Thus, the location of the seminal vesicles is behind and below the bladder within the pelvis.
What is the Anatomy of Seminal Vesicles?
Seminal vesicles are about 5 cm in length when curled up inside the glands structure. When opened to its full length, it measures about 10 cm in size. The excretory duct of the seminal gland enters the prostate gland as it opens up into the vas deferens.
What is the Function of the Seminal Vesicles?
There are many functions of the seminal vesicles. The first function of the seminal vesicles is to secrete large amounts of a fluid that turns into semen. Around 65% of the seminal fluid in humans is produced by the seminal vesicles. Next, the seminal fluid is alkaline in nature, that causes the semen to have an alkaline pH. This is very important as the vaginal tract is slightly acidic in nature. Thus, when the semen is deposited in the vagina, the alkalinity helps in neutralizing the acidity of the vaginal tract. When this happens, the sperms have a better chance to survive and reach the egg for fertilization.
One observes the semen is generally quite sticky and jelly-like in consistency when ejaculated. This sticky, jelly-like nature of semen is thought to help keep the sperms near the mouth of the womb and not slip away outside the vagina. Thus, increasing the chances of fertilization. Apart from increasing the chances of fertilization, seminal vesicle secreations also help provide nutrition to the spermatozoa. The thick fluid secreated contains proteins, mucus, vitamin C, flavins, phosphorylcholine, prostaglandins, fructose and enzymes. Fructose is supposed to provide energy to the sperms when swimming towards the egg. However, it has been found, on many occasions the sperms do not touch the seminal vesicle fluid. Thus, the physiological implications of seminal vasicular fluid are yet unclear.
This was all about seminal vesicle function. These sac-like pouches produce a fluid that is rich in fructose. It thus, helps in providing energy to the sperms. Apart from that, it produces a thick fluid that makes up a significant percentage of the semen ejaculated. This shows the function of the seminal vesicle is very significant when it comes to fertility of the male reproductive system.