Perineum

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In human anatomy, the perineum (Late Latin, from Greek περίνεος[1]) is a region of the body including the perineal body and surrounding structures. There is some variability in how the boundaries are defined.[2]

Contents

Terminology

It is generally defined as the surface region in both males and females between the pubic symphysis and the coccyx. The perineum is the region of the body inferior to the pelvic diaphragm and between the legs. It is a diamond-shaped area on the inferior surface of the trunk which includes the anus and, in females, the vagina.[3] Its definition varies: it can refer to only the superficial structures in this region, or it can be used to include both superficial and deep structures. It is an erogenous zone for both males and females. Perineal tears and episiotomy often occur in childbirth with first time deliveries, but the risk of these injuries can be reduced by preparing the perineum, e.g. through massage..

The perineum corresponds to the outlet of the pelvis.

A wide variety of slang terms (such as the "taint") are commonly used for this area of the human body, but they generally refer to a smaller, less inclusive area -- just the surface skin region between the anus and the testicles or vagina.

The anogenital distance is a measure of the distance between the anus and the base of the penis or vagina. Studies show that the human perineum is twice as long in males as in females.[4] Measuring the anogenital distance in neonatal humans has been suggested as a noninvasive method to determine male feminisation and thereby predict neonatal and adult reproductive disorders.[5]

Boundaries

Its deep boundaries are as follows:[6]

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