The female urethra is a tube at the endpoint of the Urinary System where urine and other wastes start from the Kidney and then to the Bladder prior to passing through the urethra.
This tube connects the Bladder to the outside of the body. It helps to control the excretion of urine through the urethral sphincter.
The urethra is around 1-2 inches (approximately 4cm) and is much short in women when compared to a Male’s Urethra.
The shortness of the urethra in women is a large risk factor for the increased number of Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) that occur in women.
The female urethra begins at the bottom of the bladder, and this part is known as the “neck”. It continues down through the muscular area of the pelvic floor.
Soon it passes through the urethral sphincter which is a structure that controls the movement of urine – and the ability to hold the urine until it is released.
The tube continues and opens just in front of the Vaginal Opening. It opens into the vestibule – the area between the labia minora. The distal end is marked by the presence of two mucous glands – Skene’s glands – that are located on each side of the urethra.
The Skene’s glands are similar (homologous) to the Prostate in a male.