Bulbourethral gland

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Position of the bulbourethral gland

The bulbourethral gland ( Glandula bulbourethralis , "urethral bulbous gland ") is a paired accessory sex gland in male mammals . When dog is not formed. In human medicine, it is after the English anatomist William Cowper (1666-1709) also called Cowper's glands or Cowper's gland called.


This gland is located in the urogenital diaphragm , a section of the pelvis that is filled with connective tissue. In men, this gland is about the size of a pea.

It is greatest among animals in pigs . Here it is cigar-shaped and almost 20 cm long in fully grown boars . In this species of animal, it can be felt rectally and is also used to identify cryptorchids , since in castrated animals it withers due to the lack of testosterone or does not develop at all.

The male duct, about five centimeters long, opens into the urethra . In the case of cloven-hoofed animals , it ends in a dorsally directed blind sac ( urethral recess ).

Pre-ejaculate from Cowper’s glands


The secretion of the bulbourethral gland, called pre-ejaculate or pleasure drops , is usually released before the actual ejaculation . The slimy secretion serves as a natural lubricant during intercourse and probably also the neutralization of Harnresten , possibly also of the acidic vaginal environment. When exiting the penis , the secretion can contain sperm cells and therefore possibly trigger a pregnancy . These sperm do not come from the bulbourethral gland, but are either residues from previous ejaculations in the urethra or have already passed the prostate in the case of strong sexual arousal , for example through the phase of sperm emission as the initial part of an ejaculation without immediate full ejaculation to the outside, as in consciously and possibly successfully induced orgasm delay or with injection .

Correspondence with women

The corresponding gland in women or female mammals is known as the glandula vestibularis major ( Bartholin's gland ). The approximately one to two centimeters long ducts open into the vaginal vestibule in the positions of the hands of a clock at “8 and 4 o'clock”.


The bulbourethral gland also plays a clinical role because when the posterior urethra is affected by Neisseria gonorrhoeae ( posterior gonorrheal urethritis ) - the causative agents of gonorrhea ( gonorrhea ) - inflammation ( cowperitis ), abscesses ( Cowper's abscess ) and strictures of the urethra ( Cowper's stricture) ) can trigger. Non-gonorrheic inflammation of the urethra - caused by mycoplasma , chlamydia or fungi - can also spread to the bulbourethral glands.

See also


  • Uwe Gille: Male sexual organs. In: Franz-Viktor Salomon, Hans Geyer, Uwe Gille (Ed.): Anatomy for veterinary medicine. Enke, Stuttgart 2004, ISBN 3-8304-1007-7 , pp. 389-403.

Individual evidence

  1. Otto Braun-Falco , Gerd Plewig , Helmut Heinrich Wolff, Walter HC Burgdorf, Michael Landthaler (eds.): Dermatology and Venerology. 5th edition. Springer, Heidelberg 2005, ISBN 3-540-40525-9 , p. 216.
  2. Wolfgang Gerok , Christoph Huber , Thomas Meinertz, Henning Zeidler (eds.): The internal medicine. Reference work for the specialist. 11th, completely revised and expanded edition. Schattauer, Stuttgart et al. 2007, ISBN 978-3-7945-2222-4 , p. 791.