Bulbourethral glands

The bulbourethral glands or Cowper glands are paired small pea-sized glands of the male reproductive tract, analogous to the female Bartholin glands.

The bulbourethral glands are located in the deep perineal pouch posterolateral to the membranous portion of the male urethra and covered by the external urethral sphincter. Each gland secretes mucous during sexual arousal through individual ducts, 2.5cm in length, which descend posterolateral and parallel to the membranous urethra through the perineal membrane and corpus spongisoum of the bulb of the penis to enter the floor of the bulbar urethra.

Small un-named accessory bulbourethral glands may be found in the spongisoum of the bulb of the penis, which secrete similar fluid to the primary glands.

The glands are innervated by sympathetics from the lower segments of the sympathetic chain via the hypogastric nerve.

Lymphatics drain from the gland to the internal and external iliac lymph nodes.

Anatomy: Abdominopelvic
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Article information

rID: 60956
System: Urogenital
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Cowper's glands

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