Function of the female genitalia including orgasmic response

Christopher Estes, Lydia A. Fein, Ian J. Bishop

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Two primary functions of the female genitalia, aside from micturition, include the sexual response, primarily provided by the external genitalia, and reproduction, largely a function of the internal genitalia. The external genitalia, otherwise known as the vulva, is capable of engorgement in response to sexual arousal and also allows for orgasm. Vaginal intercourse can also result in orgasm, and although the Grafenburg spot theory holds that an erogenous zone on the anterior vaginal wall is primarily responsible for this, the vaginal orgasm is most likely due to stimulation of the external genital tissues in close proximity to the vaginal vestibule. The internal genitalia, beginning with the ovaries and culminating with the uterine cervix, facilitate ovulation, oocyte transport, fertilization, embryo transport, and implantation. In addition to these processes, the internal genitalia create barriers at the cervix and the uterotubal junction to prevent the entrance of extrinsic microorganisms. These barriers also prevent sperm from ascending through the internal genitalia when the woman is not ovulating.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAesthetic and Functional Surgery of the Genitalia
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781629486444
ISBN (Print)9781628085112
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014


  • Clitoris
  • Female genitalia
  • Female sexual response
  • G-spot
  • Orgasm
  • Vulva

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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