Spermatic cord: embryonic
The duct of the epididymis exits the epididymis to continue as the ductus deferens in the spermatic cord. The spermatic cord, traversing the inguinal canal, is composed of the ductus deferens and its surrounding connective tissue, nerves and blood vessels, including the testicular artery and the pampiniform plexus of veins. Ductus deferens continues as the ejaculatory duct in the prostate gland. 10x
Ductus deferens >
The ductus deferens can be easily distinguished by its thick muscular wall and narrow lumen.
Testicular artery >
The testicular artery can be differentiated from the pampiniform veins by its thick tunica media of smooth muscle.
Pampiniform plexus >
The pampiniform plexus of veins serves as a countercurrent heat exchange mechanism to cool blood in the testicular artery as it approaches the testis.
The testis forms in the abdominal cavity in the fetus. As it “descends” to the scrotum, the fetal testis is accompanied by an extension of the peritoneal space, the processus vaginalis. This space becomes obliterated in the spermatic cord in the adult, but persists in the scrotum as the tunica vaginalis.
Image source >
This image was taken of a slide from The University of Michigan collection.