Scanning Microscopy


In 24 albinotic guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus) the gross vasculature and the microvascular architecture of the ureter were studied by light microscopy of tissue blocks and by scanning electron microscopy of vascular casts. The guinea pig ureter is supplied by the renal artery proximally, by the aorta and the internal iliac artery in its mid-segment, and by the uterine and prostatic as well as by the vesical arteries distally. The main arterial trunks run alongside the ureter before they branch to send perforating arterioles to the muscular coat and the mucosal lining. The draining venules are found on both sides of the ureter and form transverse anastomoses. Communications between the arterioles are also located on both sides, but longitudinally arranged. The capillary network of the mucosal lining shows an undulating pattern with tortuous vessels and lies just below the epithelium. The muscular coat and the adventitia have no prominent capillaries of their own. Large arteries are embedded in the adventitia, large veins in the lamina propria.

In analogy to human anatomy the vascular arrangement found suggests that, if the ureters are excised in transplant surgery, a lateral incision should be used for the abdominal portion, while the pelvic portion is best approached by a medial incision.

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