Genitourinary System (Human Body)

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Ureters are the thin tubes of muscle—one on each side of the bladder—that carry urine from each of the kidneys to the bladder. The bladder, located in the pelvis between the pelvic bones, is a hollow, muscular, balloon-shaped organ that expands as it fills with urine. Although a person does not control kidney function, a person does control when the bladder empties. Bladder emptying is known as urination. The bladder stores urine until the person finds an appropriate time and place to urinate.

A normal bladder acts like a reservoir and can hold 1.

How often a person needs to urinate depends on how quickly the kidneys produce the urine that fills the bladder. The muscles of the bladder wall remain relaxed while the bladder fills with urine. As the bladder fills to capacity, signals sent to the brain tell a person to find a toilet soon. During urination, the bladder empties through the urethra, located at the bottom of the bladder.

Three sets of muscles work together like a dam, keeping urine in the bladder between trips to the bathroom. The first set is the muscles of the urethra itself.

Anatomy and Normal Microbiota of the Urogenital Tract

The area where the urethra joins the bladder is the bladder neck. The bladder neck, composed of the second set of muscles known as the internal sphincter, helps urine stay in the bladder. One of the urine collection bottles contains acid and it is important that it is handled with care and kept far away from children. Beaumont Foundation. Search the Site:. Donate A Kidney If you are interested in becoming a living kidney donor and are in good health, here are some steps you can take. The Urinary System. The main structures, in this system are: Two kidneys — which lie behind the other major organs in the lower back area.

They are bean-shaped organs and measure about 11cm long, 6cm wide and 3cm deep. They have 5 main functions, which will be discussed at a later stage.

Description of the urinary system

Two ureters — tube-like features which run from the kidneys to the bladder carrying urine. One bladder — which collects urine from the kidneys, via the ureters, and stores it temporarily.


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One urethra — through which the urine is excreted out of the body, allowing the bladder to empty and dispose of the waste. What do the kidneys do: The kidneys… Filter and remove the waste products of the body. Remove excess water from the body. Help in the production of red blood cells, which are used to carry oxygen around the body.


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Help maintain healthy bones. Help regulate blood pressure in the body. How Do Kidneys Work: As blood flows through the body it picks up waste and carries this to the kidneys using the kidney arteries. Some Examples of Waste Products Include: Urea — Blood carries protein from your diet to thecells to fight disease and repair muscle. Whatever protein is not used is put back into the bloodstream in the form of urea for excretion. Too much urea, in the blood is known as uraemia. Potassium — A mineral absorbed into the bloodstream from many fruits and vegetables such as oranges, bananas and potatoes.

Potassium regulates the heart rate. Healthy kidneys remove excess potassium, from the blood stream, as a waste product. Creatinine — A waste product in the blood created by the breakdown of muscle cells during activity.

Urinary system - Human Body

The levels vary according to the size of the individual, i. Sodium — A chemical absorbed in the blood stream from food containing salts. Excess sodium in the blood may cause a rise in blood pressure as it plays a vital role in regulating the amount of fluid in the blood.

Erythropoietin eh-rith-ro-poy-eh-tin or Epo is a hormone that is secreted by your kidneys and stimulates the bone marrow to produce red blood cells, which carry oxygen in the blood, to the cells in the body. Renin ren-in is a hormone that the kidneys secrete to help regulate the blood pressure through a chemical process within the blood stream.

Human Physiology/The Urinary System - Wikibooks, open books for an open world

Calcitriol kal-suh-try-ul is the active form of Vitamin D that the kidneys secrete to help maintain healthy bones by maintaining a chemical balance between calcium and phosphate in the blood. In most cases only one kidney has disease unilateral-Wilms' Tumour ; but in some cases both kidneys are affected bilateral-Wilms' tumour. A small minority of cases are known to be hereditary.

Other less common kidney cancers in children include malignant rhabdoid tumours and clear cell sarcoma. Treatment for these is usually similar to that for Wilms' tumour.

Filtering Blood, Removing Urine: How the Structures of the Urinary System Work

Internet Resources for Wilms' Tumour Nephrotoxicity following Chemotherapy Some anti cancer drugs may have the side effect of damaging the kidneys, for example ifosfamide is known to be nephrotoxic. There are two categories; glomerular and tubular toxicity relating to the two main areas of the nephron. In studies of ifosfamide the degree of nephrotoxicity is thought to be related to the cumulative dose, but there is a good deal of variability between patients. Bladder Cancer Bladder cancer is a disease in which malignant cells arise in the bladder.

Symptoms can include blood in the urine, pain during urination, increased frequency of passing urine, or feeling the need to urinate but with nothing coming out. The bulk of bladder cancers are histlogically classed as transitional cell carcinomas which arise in the uroepithelium lining of the bladder.

Other types include squamous cell carcinomas, and adenocarcinomas. Treatment will depend on how far the tumour has invaded the surrounding tissues, and if it has spread to other parts of the body. World-wide about , people are diagnosed with bladder cancer each year. Internet Resources for Bladder Ca. Digestive System - Self Test questions. WebAnatomy, University of Minnesota Test your anatomy knowledge with these interactive questions.