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I was surprised to learn that the vas deferens detours over the pubic bone instead of taking the obviously more direct path.

https://human.biodigital.com/widget?be=u1P&uaid=1ly5V

Because I would assume that the vas deferens is more prone to damage facing the front. Also its damage would put procreation at stake.

Hence my question: Is there a biological reason for this path? Some advantage which outweighs or balances its disadvantages?

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ What do you consider the "obviously more direct path"? The vas deferens has to pass over the pelvis somehow to get back to the level of the prostatic urethra. Remember that the vas deferens travels with a number of other structures (vessels/nerves) in the "spermatic cord". $\endgroup$ – Harry Vervet Feb 17 '16 at 16:36
  • $\begingroup$ okay, probably I am being a bit naive here - I didn't study medicine or biology, after all. But just visualize your own reproductive system and think of direct path between testicles and prostate. That path would be a third or less of the actual - so this is what I wonder about. And the solid pelvic bone in the back increases the risk of damage in case of a hit from the front. $\endgroup$ – Raffael Feb 17 '16 at 16:46
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Question: QuestionWhat is another physical example similar to the laryngeal nerve that refutes the idea of intelligent design and what does it indicate about our past?

Dawkins: The path of the human vas deferens is a similar example.

from Reddit AMA with Richard Dawkins

So (at least) according to Dawkins the path which the vas deferens takes is simply an evolutionary "mistake".

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