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Superficial Inguinal Ring
Muscular System

Superficial Inguinal Ring

Anulus inguinalis superficialis

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The superficial inguinal ring is an opening formed in the aponeurosis of the external oblique muscle. It can be described as being slit-like or diagonal; however, it is actually a triangular hiatus in the external oblique aponeurosis. Its apex points laterally towards the anterior superior iliac spine, while its base lies along the pubic crest. The ring is small varies in size and is smaller in females.

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Anatomical Relations

The superficial inguinal ring is located just above and lateral to the pubic tubercle. Its margins are formed by medial and lateral crura. The lateral crus is strong and thick, and attaches to the pubic tubercle. Fibers of the thin medial crus are attached to the pubic crest and interlace with fibers of the opposite side over the pubic symphysis. Some of these fibers, along with fibers of the superficial layer of investing (deep) fascia, form the external spermatic fascia in males and the coverings of the round ligament in females.


The superficial inguinal ring is the superficial boundary of the inguinal canal. It serves as the exit of the inguinal canal, the passageway for the round ligament in females, the spermatic cord in males, blood vessels, lymphatics, and the ilioinguinal nerve in both sexes. The crura of the superficial inguinal ring also give attachment to the coverings of the round ligament and the external spermatic fascia.

List of Clinical Correlates

- Indirect inguinal hernia

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Superficial Inguinal Ring

ScienceDirect image

It exits the superficial inguinal ring on the anterior aspect of the spermatic cord/round ligament to supply the skin of the medial thigh and the root of the penis and anterior scrotum in males or the mons pubis and labia majora in females (Klassen et al., 2011).

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