Function and Location

The bladder, located in the pelvis, is a hollow, muscular, balloon shaped organ that stores urine. The kidneys make urine when they filter the blood. Urine flows from the kidneys through a pair of thin tubes, the ureters, to the bladder, where it is stored until a person urinates. During urination, muscles in the wall of the bladder contract, forcing urine out of the bladder and into a tube called the urethra. One end of the urethra is connected to the bladder; the other end is open. In women, the opening is located just above the vagina. In men, it’s at the tip of the penis. When the bladder muscles tighten and the spincter muscles relax, urine leaves the body by passing through the opening of the urethra.

Conditions of the Bladder

Additional Resources

For more information about conditions affecting the bladder, see the following web sites:

American Foundation for Urologic Disease
American Urological Association
National Cancer Institute

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