Uterus

Synonyms: Womb

Medical Specialties: Family practice, Internal medicine, Obstetrics/gynecology


Clinical Definition

The uterus, or womb, is the female organ that carries the fetus. When a woman becomes pregnant, fertilization normally takes place in the fallopian tube; next the fused egg and sperm travel to the lining of the uterus, implant and grow. Menstruation is the monthly shedding of the uterine lining; the monthly flow is composed of blood and tissue from inside the uterus that flows from the uterus through the cervix and out of the body through the vagina.


In Our Own Words

The uterus, commonly called the womb, is where an unborn baby grows during pregnancy. Typically, fertilization takes place in the fallopian tube and then the egg and sperm, now fused, travel to the uterine lining to implant and grow.

 

If pregnancy does not occur, the lining is shed in the monthly menstruation or period. The blood that flows out of the body is part blood and part tissue from the inside of the uterus. It goes from the uterus through the cervix and out out of the body through the vagina.

Relevant Conditions
  • Uterine Polyps
  • Pregnancy
  • Endometriosis
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sources
  • The Cleveland Clinic. "Normal Menstruation." Anatomy. October 2012. http://my.clevelandclinic.org. Accessed November 2013.
  • American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. "How Your Baby Grows During Pregnancy." Frequently Asked Questions. August 2011. http://www.acog.org. Accessed November 2013.
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