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Last updated date: 30th Nov 2023
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MVSAT Dec 2023

Define epididymis.

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Hint: The male reproductive system is made up of a variety of sex organs that all play a role in human reproduction. These organs can be found on the outside of the body as well as within the pelvis.

Complete answer:
The epididymis is a coiled, long tube that stores and transports sperm from the testes. Each testis has a curved structure on the posterior (back) margin. It is divided into three sections. There are three of them: the head, the body, and the tail. Although it looks similar to the testes, the epididymis differs in that it is smaller, and the tubes are larger and less densely packed.
The head of the epididymis is located near the top of the testis and stores sperm until it is ready for maturation. The body follows, which is a long, twisted tube where the sperm matures. This maturation process takes about a week. The trail connects to the different ducts, also known as the ductus deferens or vas deferens. The sperm is then transported to the ejaculatory duct.
The tunica vaginalis is a thin sheet of tissue that surrounds and separates the epididymis from the testis. The epididymis is lined with pseudostratified columnar epithelial tissue, which means that the arrangement of the cells gives the appearance of two layers even though there is only one.
The epididymis' primary functions are sperm transport and maturation. This function is performed by the epididymis in many mammalian species. As sperm pass through the epididymis, they are exposed to a variety of signals from epididymal cells, which drive their maturation.

Several congenital conditions can result in epididymis abnormalities. Undescended testes, also known as cryptorchidism, are a condition in which the testes become trapped in the abdomen and do not descend into the scrotum.