A guide to our reproductive system

  1. Ovarian Cycle: responsible for the changes in the ovary (release of an egg into the uterus)
  • Luteal phase: all the events that lead up to a period (days 14–28)
  1. Pregnancy
  2. Menopause

But, first. Let’s understand the reproduction system

  • Vagina: The vagina is the connector of the uterus to the outside world. It has 3 main uses; a pathway for birth, periods and sexual intercourse.
  • Ovary: Organ that stores eggs and produces ovum, where it goes down the fallopian tube into the uterus, where it may become fertilized by a sperm.
  • Cervix: Connects the uterus and the vagina.
  • Endometrium: Outer lining layer made up of glandular cells that produce cervical mucus. The endometrium thickens and sheds, which creates “periods.”
  • Fallopian Tube: Tubes that stretch from the uterus to the ovaries and are used for transferring fertilized eggs.
  • Myometrium: Muscle below endometrium surrounding the uterus
  • Uterine Fundus: Connects fallopian tubes to the uterus.
  • Fimbriae: Finger-like projections that capture the egg, and send it down the fallopian tubes.

Uterine Cycle

The uterine cycle also more commonly known as the menstrual cycle is all about the shedding of the blood and it deals with the Endometrium.

  • Functional Layer: is a dynamic layer consists of permanent stromal tissue and deep ends of the uterine glands. This layer changes its thickness depending on hormonal layers.
  1. The endometrium regrows in preparation for fertilization leading up to ovulation (when hormones trigger an ovary to release an egg in the menstrual cycle).
  2. If pregnancy does not occur then, the cycle starts again with shedding the endometrium and creating a new layer.

The role of the endometrium

While the role of the endometrium is to get our period. Think about why we get our period?

Ovarian Cycle

The ovarian cycle is directly associated with the uterine cycle as they are both working towards creating a 👶🏻


The Hormonal System: How it all comes together!

Sister: She’s so moody today.

Follicular Phase

During the follicular phase from day 1–14, 2 cycles are going on

  • The Uterine cycle is adjusting the endometrium, in preparation for that egg (if it is to get fertilized).

Ovum Maturation

The maturation of the ovum is in other words the survival of the fittest.

  1. Primary follicles
  2. Secondary follicles
  3. Tertiary follicle
  4. Mature graafian follicles (follicles are ready to ovulate)

Hormonal Influence

  1. The bi-product of FSH being released is estrogen is also released.
  2. When follicles start to die it’s because the estrogen stops the increase of FSH and LH, which boosts competition for follicles to find the dominant follicle.
  3. When estrogen increases in the blood, FSH spikes causing ovulation.
  4. LH also increases causing the ovum to release from fallopian tubes

Endometrium thickens

2/3 of the menstrual cycle takes place in the follicular phase.

  • Old endometrium lining sheds in the first 5 days
  • Growing a new functional layer and making cervical mucus

Luteal Phase

During the Luteal Phase, the cycles are up to:

  • Uterine cycle: thickening the endometrium and producing a thick, cervical fluid.

The complete cycle

This is it! Why do we menstruate, and get pregnant? Thank our reproductive system.

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