A 72-year-old man comes to his physician for an annual checkup. Which of the following structures is most readily palpated during rectal examination?
(A) Prostate gland
© Ejaculatory duct
The prostate gland may be palpated on rectal examination. The ejaculatory
duct runs within the prostate gland and cannot be felt. In the male, the pelvic part of
the ureter lies lateral to the ductus deferens and enters the posterosuperior angle of the
bladder, where it is situated anterior to the upper end of the seminal vesicle, and thus, it
cannot be palpated during rectal examination. However, in the female, the ureter can be
palpated during vaginal examination because it runs near the uterine cervix and the lateral
fornix of the vagina to enter the posterosuperior angle of the bladder. The testes are
examined during a routine annual checkup but obviously not during a rectal examination.