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Ureter
Urinary tract la.png
Ureter (Anatomical View)
Urinary system.svg
Ureter (Schematic View)
1. Human urinary system: 2. Kidney, 3. Renal pelvis, 4. Ureter, 5. Urinary bladder, 6. Urethra. (Left side with frontal section), 7. Adrenal gland

Vessels:
8. Renal artery and vein, 9. Inferior vena cava, 10. Abdominal aorta, 11. Common iliac artery and vein

With transparency:
12. Liver, 13. Large intestine, 14. Pelvis
Latin Ureter
Gray's p.1225
Artery Superior vesical artery, Vaginal artery, Ureteral branches of renal artery
Precursor Ureteric bud
MeSH Ureter
Dorlands
/Elsevier
Ureter

In human anatomy, the ureters are tubes made of smooth muscle fibers that propel urine from the kidneys to the urinary bladder. In the adult, the ureters are usually 25–30 cm (10–12 in) long and ~3–4 mm in diameter. Histologically, the ureter contains transitional epithelium and an additional smooth muscle layer in the more distal one-third to assist with peristalsis.

Structure[edit]

In humans, the ureters arise from the pelvis of each kidney, and descend on top of the psoas major muscle to reach the brim of the pelvis. Here, they cross in front of the common iliac arteries. They then pass down along the sides of the pelvis, and finally curve forwards and enter the bladder from its left and right sides at the back of the bladder. [1]:324-326 This is classically depicted as running "posteroinferiorly on the lateral walls of the pelvis and then curve anteriormedially to enter the bladder". The junction between the pelvis of the kidney and the ureters is known as the pelvoureteric junction and the junction between the ureter and the bladder as the vesicoureteric junction. At the entrance to the bladder, the ureters are surrounded by valves known as ureterovesical valves, which prevent the backflow of urine.[citation needed]

In females, the ureters pass through the mesometrium and under the uterine arteries on the way to the urinary bladder. An effective phrase for remembering this anatomical relationship is "water (ureters) under the bridge (uterine arteries or vas deferens).

Blood supply[edit]

The ureters receive a segmental arterial supply, which varies along its course. [1]:324-326

  1. The upper part of the ureter closest to the kidney is supplied by the renal arteries
  2. The middle part of the ureter is supplied by the common iliac arteries, direct branches from the abdominal aorta, and gonadal arteries (the testicular artery in men or ovarian artery in women)
  3. The lower part of the ureter closest to the bladder is supplied by branches from the internal iliac arteries,[1]:324-326, as well as[citation needed]:
  • Superior vesical artery
  • Uterine artery (in women only)
  • Middle rectal artery
  • Vaginal arteries (in women only)
  • Inferior vesical artery (in men only)

Within the periureteral adventitia these arteries extensively anastomose thus permitting surgical mobilization of the ureter without compromising the vascular supply as long as the adventitia is not stripped. Lymphatic and venous drainage mostly parallels that of the arterial supply.[2]

Innervation[edit]

The ureters are richly innervated by nerves that travel alongside the blood vessels. The primary sensation to the ureters is provided by nerves that come from T12-L2 segments of the spinal cord. Thus pain may be referred to the dermatomes of T12-L2, namely the back and sides of the abdomen, the scrotum (males) or labia majora (females) and upper part of the front of the thigh. [1]:324-326

Histology[edit]

The ureter is surrounded by urothelium, a type of transitional epithelium that is capable of responding to stretches in the ureters. The transitional epithelium may appear as a columnar epithelia when relaxed, and squamous epithelia when distended. Below the epithelium, a submucosa exists. The submucosa is made up of connective tissue interspersed with blood vessels, veins and lymphatics. that the ureter is surrounded by two muscular layers, an inner longitudinal layer of muscle, and an outer layer of muscle arranged circularly. [3] :324

In other animals[edit]

Ureters are also found in all other amniote species, although different ducts fulfill the same role in amphibians and fish.[4]

Function[edit]

The ureters are a component of the urinary system. Urine, produced by the kidneys, travels along the ureters to the bladder.

Clinical significance[edit]

Cancer of the ureters is known as ureteral cancer.

The ureters are also known for being extremely hard to work around during surgery and account for 80 percent of failed kidney transplants.[citation needed]

Injury[edit]

The ureter is sometimes injured during hysterectomies, near the infundibulopelvic (suspensory) ligament or where the ureter courses posterior to the uterine vessels.[5]

Kidney stones[edit]

A kidney stone can move from the kidney and become lodged inside the ureter, which can block the flow of urine, as well as cause a sharp cramp in the back, side, or lower abdomen.[6] The affected kidney could then develop hydronephrosis, should a part of the kidney become swollen due to blocked flow of urine.[7] There are three sites where a kidney stone will commonly become stuck:

  • at the ureteric junction of renal pelvis;
  • as the ureter passes over the iliac vessels;
  • where the ureter enters into the urinary bladder (vesicoureteric junction).

Reflux[edit]

Vesicoureteral reflux refers to the reflux of fluid from the bladder to the ureters during urination. This condition can be one cause of chronic urinary tract infections, particularly in children. Vesicoureteral reflux may be treated surgically, and is believed to have a genetic basis.[citation needed]

Additional images[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Drake, Richard L.; Vogl, Wayne; Tibbitts, Adam W.M. Mitchell ; illustrations by Richard; Richardson, Paul (2005). Gray's anatomy for students. Philadelphia: Elsevier/Churchill Livingstone. ISBN 978-0-8089-2306-0. 
  2. ^ Wein, Alan J. (2011). Campbell-Walsh Urology, 10th. ed. Elsevier. p. 31. 
  3. ^ Lowe, Alan Stevens, James S. (2005). Human histology (3rd ed. ed.). Philadelphia, Toronto: Elsevier Mosby. ISBN 0-3230-3663-5. 
  4. ^ Romer, Alfred Sherwood; Parsons, Thomas S. (1977). The Vertebrate Body. Philadelphia, PA: Holt-Saunders International. p. 378. ISBN 0-03-910284-X. 
  5. ^ Santucci, Richard A. "Ureteral Trauma". Medscape. Retrieved 11 April 2012. 
  6. ^ "Symptoms of Kidney Stones". MedicalBug. 1 January 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2012. 
  7. ^ Resnick, Martin I; Lam, Mildred; Zipp, Thomas (4 September 2009). "Kidney Stones". NetWellness. Retrieved 11 April 2012. 

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ureter — Please support Wikipedia.
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57 news items

 
Arab Times Kuwait English Daily
Mon, 21 Apr 2014 14:56:15 -0700

However, the surgeon was unable to carry out that surgery and ended up putting a catheter in the left ureter to expand it. Due to unavailability of the necessary equipment for breaking the stone inside the kidney, she returned to the public hospital ...

Sydney Morning Herald

Sydney Morning Herald
Tue, 22 Apr 2014 17:45:00 -0700

One 58-year-old donor developed a fistula between her ureter and her vagina, meaning she had to have a second round of surgery. Then there is the impact on the pregnant women themselves, undergoing this highly medicalised pregnancy. ''They'll feel ...
 
Optics.org
Mon, 14 Apr 2014 02:45:00 -0700

Tzipi Ozer-Armon, Lumenis CEO, indicated that it would provide a significant improvement to the company's current solutions for treating ureter and kidney stones by enucleation and flexible ureteroscopy, in which a probe is passed through the urethra ...

Nwlaborpress

Nwlaborpress
Tue, 15 Apr 2014 12:01:21 -0700

In Washington, when a firefighter is diagnosed with brain cancer, malignant melanoma, leukemia, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, bladder cancer, ureter cancer, or kidney cancer, those conditions are considered “presumptively” work-related. Oregon's list is even ...
 
Access North Georgia
Mon, 31 Mar 2014 18:18:45 -0700

Further testing by Dr. Fogg revealed Gibbs had ureteropelvic junction (UPJ) obstruction – a congenital condition caused by the narrowing of the area between the ureter and a section of the kidney known as the renal pelvis. Most commonly diagnosed in ...

SpaceCoastDaily.com

SpaceCoastDaily.com
Wed, 09 Apr 2014 15:07:30 -0700

“Urinary fistulas result in constant drainage of urine into the vagina through an opening in the bladder, urethra or ureter,” said Tieu. IN THE LAST FEW YEARS, advancements in diversifying treatment of overactive bladder includes the use of Botox ...
 
Greenock Telegraph
Fri, 11 Apr 2014 06:05:43 -0700

These nephrons filter out toxic waste products, which arise from protein metabolism, and they regulate the amount of water, salt and electrolytes in the body. Urine produced in the kidney passes into a tube called the ureter, which carries it down to ...
 
WLS
Mon, 31 Mar 2014 06:18:45 -0700

George had radical surgery to remove his cancerous bladder, prostate and part of his right ureter in July of 2006. He spent 19 days at Loyola University Medical Center and emerged cancer-free. He submitted his letter of resignation in 2012, as all ...
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