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Reviewers: Komal Arora, M.D., (see Reviewers page)
Revised: 9 August 2012, last major update March 2012
Copyright: (c) 2003-2012, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.


● 20g, funnel shaped, 4 x 3 x 2 cm
● Within true pelvis between bladder neck (base of prostate) and urogenital diaphragm / levator ani muscle (apex of prostate)
● Apex contains some muscle fibers from urogenital diaphragm
● Seminal vesicles extend from posterior prostate to posterior surface of bladder
● Ampulla of Vas (ductus) deferens and terminal seminal vesicle duct form ejaculatory duct, join prostatic utricle to open into prostatic urethra
● Denonvillier’s fascia (also called rectovesicle septum): thin layer of connective tissue that separates prostate and seminal vesicles from rectum
● Prostatic urethra begins on superior surface, descends almost vertically, with continuous prostatic utricle extending to posterior prostatic wall, exits anteriorly; divided into halves by sharp 35 degree angle midway, at site of verumontanum (bulge along posterior proximal urethra; site of emptying of ejaculatory, central and transition zone ducts)
● Peripheral zone ducts empty into distal urethra
● Prostatic nervous plexus supplies prostate, seminal vesicles, corpus spongiosum, corpora cavernosum and urethra; nerves are distributed evenly in apex, mid gland and base of prostate, Am J Clin Pathol 2001;115:39
Function: Conduit for urine, adds nutritional secretions to sperm to form semen during ejaculation

Anatomical models

● Embryologic model: 5 lobes, 2 lateral plus posterior, middle, anterior lobes
● Other model (not used): 2 lateral lobes, small median lobe (contains posterior lobe, forms floor of urethra)
● Current model (McNeal): transitional, central, peripheral, periurethral zones (Prostate 1981;2:35)
● Outer (cortical) zones are termed “peripheral” and “central”; central is towards base
● Inner (periurethral) zone is termed “transitional”


Relationship to other anatomic structures

Prostate anatomy

McNeal zones (1= Peripheral Zone, 2= Central Zone, 3= Transitional Zone, 4= Anterior Fibromuscular Zone. B= Bladder, U= Urethra, SV= Seminal Vesicle)

Gross images

Normal prostate: young adult

End of Prostate > Anatomy

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