Foreskin

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In male human anatomy, the foreskin is a generally retractable double-layered fold of skin and mucous membrane that covers the glans penis and protects the urinary meatus (pronounced /miːˈeɪtəs/) when the penis is not erect. It is also described as the prepuce, a technically broader term that also includes the clitoral hood in women, to which the foreskin is embryonically homologous.

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Description

The outside of the foreskin is a continuation of the skin on the shaft of the penis, but the inner foreskin is a mucous membrane like the inside of the eyelid or the mouth. The mucocutaneous zone occurs where the outer and inner foreskin meet. Like the eyelid, the foreskin is free to move after it separates from the glans, usually by puberty. Smooth muscle fibres keep it close to the glans but make it highly elastic.[1] The foreskin is attached to the glans by a frenulum, which helps return the foreskin over the glans. At the end of the foreskin, there is a band of tissue called the ridged band, which, according to Cold and Taylor, contains nerve endings called Meissner's corpuscles.[2][3] (Some authors have reported the presence of these receptors in the foreskin as a whole.[4][5][6][7][8] However, Winkelmann has noted that the literature on the subject is conflicting, and the descriptions of the receptors found do not agree; he argues that the structures are not Meissner's corpuscles.[9]) According to a study by Sorrells et al. (2007), the five most sensitive areas of the penis are on the foreskin;[10] this is disputed by Waskett and Morris, who argue that re-analysis of Sorrells' data shows no significant differences.[11]

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