The female reproductive system is a complex group of internal and external organs that work together to perform a wide variety of vital functions. This system is essential to not only the creation of human life but the delivery of that life into the world. The female reproductive system also produces hormones that initiate puberty, regulate the menstrual cycle, and generate egg cells. Once menopause occurs, many physical changes affect the woman’s reproductive system, including the cessation of the menstrual cycle.
The external organs of a woman’s reproductive system are located in the pelvis. The vulva includes the entire exterior part of the female reproductive system. The mons pubis, a triangular area of fatty tissue found above the vaginal opening, lies on top of the pubic bone. Two pairs of skin flaps cover the vaginal opening. The labia majora, which is also called the outer lips, protects the other external organs. The labia minora is located inside the labia majora and protects the opening to the vagina. A sensory organ -- the clitoris -- lies just inside the top of the labia minora and is covered by the clitoral hood. Located just below the clitoris is the urinary opening.
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