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Uterus, light micrograph

Uterus, light micrograph


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Light micrograph of a sectioned human uterus in late secretory phase of the menstrual cycle. The inner lining/endometrium is simple tubular glands of epithelial cells the depth of which varies during the menstrual cycle being narrow at the start but increasing in depth due to growth and elongation of the glands. If there is no pregnancy the glands disintegrate and contribute to the menstrual flow. The glands persist if pregnancy occurs and support implantation of the conceptus. Most of the uterus is formed of a thick wall of smooth muscle (myometrium) beneath the glands. During labour the muscle contracts to expel the fetus at birth. Magnification x5 when printed at 10 cm wide.

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