Difference Between Cervix and Uterus

Cervix vs Uterus
 

Uterus and cervix are important muscular structures of the reproduction system in females. These structures facilitate the development of embryo and fetus during pregnancy.  In nonpregnant periods, uterus and cervix help to maintain the menstruation cycle and provide protection for the reproduction system of females. The physiologies of uterus and cervix are regulated by hormones. 

Image 1: Female Reproductive System

              

Uterus

Uterus is a pear-shaped muscular structure in female reproductive system. It basically composed of three main parts; fundus, body, and cervix. The Fundus is the expanded superior part, where the openings of fallopian tubes are present. The body is the narrow and constricted part while the cervix is the neck region that connects the vagina. Uterus is usually 7.5 cm long and 5 cm wide and has walls about 2.5 cm thick. During nonpregnant period uterus serves as a barrier which prevents bacteria entering the uterine and abdominal cavities via vagina. During pregnancy, it is the site of development of the embryo and fetus. At birth, it helps to expel the fetus from the body. 

Image 2: Uterus

 

Cervix

Cervix is considered as a part of the reproductive system in females and comprises the lower portion of the uterus, so called ‘lower uterine segment’. It is roughly cylindrical in shape, about 2.5 to 3 cm in length and 2. 5 to 3 cm in horizontal diameter.  Cervix is made up of firm connective tissues. About 2 cm of cervix protrudes into the vagina and the remainder is intraperitoneal. The cavity of the cervix is known as cervical cavity or cervix orifice, through which uterus communicates with the vagina. The cervix opens into the uterus through ‘internal os’ and into the vagina through ‘external os’. Uterine arteries supply blood to cervix. The ectocervix that protrudes into the vagina is lined by squamous epithelium, and the endocervical canal, which is the passageway between external os and internal os, is lined by a columnar. This columnar epithelium has cervical glands, which produce an alkaline mucous (cervical mucous). Cervix prevents entering bacteria to uterine and abdominal cavities through the vagina.

What is the difference between Cervix and Uterus?

• Cervix is a main part of the uterus; it makes the lower portion of the uterus.

• Uterine cavity and vaginal cavity connect through the cervical cavity.

• Uterus is a pear-shaped muscular structure, whereas cervix is a cylindrical shaped structure with endocervical canal.

• Uterus provides a site to develop embryo and fetus, whereas cervix prevents bacteria entering into the uterine cavity and body cavity.

 

Source:

Image 2: Teixeira, J., Rueda, B.R., and Pru, J.K., Uterine Stem cells (September 30, 2008), StemBook, ed. The Stem Cell Research Community, StemBook, doi/10.3824/stembook.1.16.1, http://www.stembook.org.