Digital rectal examination

Digital examination of the rectum is an important component of the clinical exarriillation and the student should be familiar with the normal structures. Because this simple procedure is disagreeable to the patient, it is often inappropriately omitted.

The upper end of the anal canal is marked by the puborectalis muscle which is readily palpable and which contracts reflexly on coughing or conscious contraction by the patient. Beyond the anal canal, the rectum passes upwards and backwards along the curve of the coccyx and the sacrum, The normal rectum is usually empty and smooth-walled. The coccyx and sacrum lie posteriorly. In the male, anteriorly from below upwards, lie ihe membranous urethra. Ihe prostate and base of ihe bladder. The normal prostate is smooth and has a firm consistency with lateral lobes and a median groove between them. In the female, ihe vagina and cervix lie anteriorly.

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Essentials of Human Physiology

Essentials of Human Physiology

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