Clitoris

Dr Daniel J Bell et al.

The clitoris (plural: clitorides), the female homologue of the penis, and part of the female reproductive system, is situated at the anterior aspect of the labia minora. The clitoris, like the penis, is formed of a body and glans, formed respectively from the crura of the clitoris and the bulbs of the vestibule.

The crura of the clitoris are homologous to the crura of the penis, with one crus lying along each inferior public ramus. The crura unite anteriorly to form the corpora cavernosa, separated by a thin fibrous septum, which form the body of the clitoris 5. The body is enclosed by a single layer of tunica albuginea. The clitoral neurovascular bundles run along the posterior aspects of the body and glans. Further thin layers of connective soft tissues encase the clitoral body and its neurovascular structures 6.

The body is surmounted by the glans, which is formed from the anterior conjunction of the bulbs of the vestibule. The glans lies caudally and is angulated posteriorly.

In older texts, the vestibular bulbs are not technically considered to form part of the clitoris, however newer articles suggest that this maybe an outdated idea.

At their ventral aspect, the labia minora bisect and envelop the clitoris, anteriorly forming the prepuce (a.k.a. the clitoral hood), a homologue to the foreskin of the penis. The prepuce usually covers the highly sensitive glans. Posteriorly, the labia form the frenulum of the clitoris, this is a different structure from the frenulum of the labia minora.

  • dorsal artery of the clitoris
  • dorsal vein of the clitoris
Anatomy: Abdominopelvic

Anatomy: Abdominopelvic

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Article information

rID: 73111
System: Gynaecology
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Tunica albuginea (clitoris)
  • Frenulum of the clitoris
  • Prepuce of the clitoris
  • Clitoral body
  • Bodies of the clitoris
  • Body of the clitoris
  • Clitoral crura
  • Clitoral crus
  • Crus of the clitoris
  • Crura of the clitoris
  • Root of the clitoris
  • Clitorides

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