The scrotum. (Label for Dartos is at bottom left.)
The scrotum. (Label for Dartos is at bottom left.)
Gray's subject #258 1238
Origin Subcutaneous tissue of scrotum, superficial to superficial fascia (Colles)
Insertion    Skin and midline raphé of scrotum
Artery Artery of Duffy[citation needed]
Nerve Genital branch of genitofemoral nerve
Actions Corrugates the scrotum

The dartos fascia is a fat-free layer of smooth muscular fiber outside the external spermatic fascia but below the skin. It is a continuation of Scarpa's fascia, which is a membranous layer of the subcutaneous tissue in the abdominal wall. The wrinkled (rugose) appearance of the scrotum is due to this layer of fascia.


Gender differences

  • In males it is termed tunica dartos and lies beneath the skin of the scrotum. In older males the dartos muscle loses its tone, and tends to cause the scrotum to be smoother and to hang down farther.
  • In females, the same muscle fibers are less well developed and termed dartos muliebris, lying beneath the skin of the labia majora.
  • It receives innervation from postganglionic sympathetic nerve fibers arriving via the ilioinguinal nerve and the posterior scrotal nerve. (http://anatomy.med.umich.edu/gastrointestinal_system/inguinal_tables.html)


The Skin of scrotum

The tunica dartos acts to regulate the temperature of the testicles, which promotes spermatogenesis. It does this by expanding or contracting to wrinkle the scrotal skin.

  • Contraction reduces the surface area available for heat loss, thus reducing heat loss and warming the testicles.
  • Conversely, expansion increases the surface area, promoting heat loss and thus cooling the testicles.

The dartos muscle works in conjunction with the cremaster muscle to elevate the testis but should not be confused with the cremasteric reflex.

Related terms

Some dartos-related terms:

dartoic (dar·to·ic) (dahr-to'ik) of the nature of a dartos; having a slow, involuntary contractility like that of the dartos.
dartoid (dar·toid) (dahr'toid) resembling the dartos.

Additional images

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • dartos — m. anat. Lámina de tejido muscular liso contráctil que forma una túnica por debajo del escroto y está íntimamente unida a él. Se prolonga por el pene hasta el abdomen, donde da lugar al ligamento suspensorio del pene. Su contracción (por el frío) …   Diccionario médico

  • Dartos — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Segunda capa estructural de las bolsas testiculares. Es una lamina de fibras musculares lisas, adherentes a la piel. Su dirección es perpendicular a la de los pliegugues transversales del ((escroto)). Contiene todos… …   Wikipedia Español

  • dartos — ● dartos nom masculin (grec dartos, écorché) Membrane immédiatement sous jacente à la peau du scrotum, constituée de fibres élastiques et de fibres musculaires lisses …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Dartos — Dar tos, n. [NL., fr. Gr. ? flayed.] (Anat.) A thin layer of peculiar contractile tissue directly beneath the skin of the scrotum. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dartos — (gr.), die innere Haut des Hodensackes …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Dartos — Dartos, griech., s. Hoden …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • dartos — See d. fascia. [G. skinned or flayed, fr. dero, to skin] d. muliebris a very thin layer of smooth muscle in the integument of the labia majora; less well developed than the tunica d. of the scrotum. * * * dar·tos där .täs, därt əs n a thin layer… …   Medical dictionary

  • dartos — (dar tos ) s. m. Terme d anatomie. Enveloppe des testicules située au dessous de la peau du scrotum, à laquelle elle adhère intimement. HISTORIQUE    XVIe s. •   La seconde tunique propre des testicules est l epididymis ou dartos, prenant son… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • dartos — ˈdärˌtäs, rd.əs noun ( es) Etymology: New Latin, from Greek dartos flayed, verbal of derein to flay more at tear : a thin layer of vascular contractile tissue that contains unstriped muscle fibers but no fat and is situated beneath the skin of… …   Useful english dictionary

  • dartos muscle — musculus dartos; the term is also used more broadly to denote the tunica dartos (q.v.) …   Medical dictionary

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