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retrogradi, which means “to go backward.”)




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Root

The base of the penis, which extends into the pelvis.




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Scrotum

The pouch of loose skin that contains the testes. (From the same linguistic root as the word shred, which means “a long, narrow strip,” probably referring to the long furrows on the scrotal sac.)




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Secondary amenorrhea

Lack of menstruation in a woman who has previously menstruated.




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Secondary dysmenorrhea

Menstrual pain or discomfort that is caused by identified organic problems. \




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Secondary sex characteristics

Traits that distinguish the genders but are not directly involved in reproduction.




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Secondary sex characteristics

Traits that distinguish women from men but are not directly involved in reproduction.




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Secretory phase

The third phase of the menstrual cycle, which follows ovulation. Also referred to as the luteal phase, after the corpus luteum, which begins to secrete large amounts of progesterone and estrogen following ovulation.




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Semen

The whitish fluid that constitutes the ejaculate, consisting of sperm and secretions from the seminal vesicles, prostate gland, and Cowper's glands.




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Seminal vesicles

Small glands that lie behind the bladder and secrete fluids that combine with sperm in the ejaculatory ducts.




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Seminiferous tubules

Tiny, winding, sperm-producing tubes that are located within the lobes of the testes. (From Latin roots that mean “seed bearing.”)




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Shaft

The body of the penis, which expands as a result of vasocongestion.




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Sperm

The male germ cell. (From a Greek root that means “seed.”)




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Spermatic cord

The cord that suspends a testicle within the scrotum and contains a vas deferens, blood vessels, nerves, and the cremaster muscle.




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Spermatids

Cells formed by the division of spermatocytes. Each spermatid has 23 chromosomes.




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Spermatocyte

An early stage in the development of sperm cells, in which each parent cell has 46 chromosomes, including one X and one Y sex chromosome.




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Spermatogenesis

The process by which sperm cells are produced and developed.




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Spermatozoa

Mature sperm cells.




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Sphincters

Ring-shaped muscles that surround body openings and open or close them by expanding or contracting. (From the Greek for “that which draws close.”)




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Sympathetic

The branch of the ANS most active during emotional responses that draw on the body's reserves of energy, such as fear and anxiety. The sympathetic ANS largely controls ejaculation.




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Tampon

A cylindrical plug of cotton that is inserted into the vagina and left in place to absorb menstrual fluid. (A French word meaning a gun barrel “plug.”)




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Testes

The male gonads.




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Testes

The male sex glands, suspended in the scrotum, that produce sperm cells and male sex hormones. Singular: testis.




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Testicles

Testes.




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Testosterone

A male steroid sex hormone.




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Testosterone

The male sex hormone that fosters the development of male sex characteristics and is connected with the sex drive.




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Urethral bulb

The small tube that makes up the prostatic part of the urethral tract and that balloons out as muscles close at either end, trapping semen prior to ejaculation.




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Urethral opening

The opening through which urine passes from the female's body.




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Urethritis

An inflammation of the bladder or urethra.




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Urologist

A physician who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the urogenital system.




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Uterus

The hollow, muscular, pear-shaped organ in which a fertilized ovum implants and develops until birth.




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Vagina

The tubular female sex organ that contains the penis during sexual intercourse and through which a baby is born. (Latin for “sheath.”)




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Vaginitis

Vaginal inflammation.




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Vas deferens

A tube that conducts sperm from the testicle to the ejaculatory duct of the penis. (From Latin roots meaning “a vessel” that “carries down.”)




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Vestibular bulbs

Cavernous structures that extend downward along the sides of the introitus and swell during sexual arousal.




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Vulva

The external sexual structures of the female.




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Zygote

A fertilized ovum (egg cell).




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Anaphrodisiacs

Drugs or other agents whose effects are antagonistic to sexual arousal or sexual desire.




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Anti-androgen

A substance that decreases the levels of androgens in the bloodstream.




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Aphrodisiac

Any drug or other agent that is sexually arousing or increases sexual desire. (From Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and beauty.)




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Arthritis

A progressive disease characterized by inflammation or pain in the joints.




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Cerebral cortex

The wrinkled surface area (grey matter) of the cerebrum.




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Cerebral palsy

A muscular disorder that is caused by damage to the central nervous system (usually prior to or during birth) and is characterized by spastic paralysis.




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Erogenous zones

Parts of the body that are especially sensitive to tactile sexual stimulation. (Erogenous is derived from roots that mean “giving birth to erotic sensations.”)




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Excitement phase

The first phase of the sexual response cycle, which is characterized by erection in the male, by vaginal lubrication in the female, and by muscle tension and increases in heart rate in both males and females.




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Grafenberg spot

A part of the anterior wall of the vagina, whose prolonged stimulation is theorized to cause particularly intense orgasms and a female ejaculation. Abbreviated G-spot.




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Hormone

A substance that is secreted by an endocrine gland and regulates various body functions. (From the Greek horman, which means “to stimulate” or “to goad.”)




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Hypogonadism

An abnormal condition marked by abnormally low levels of testosterone production.




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Limbic system

A group of structures active in memory, motivation, and emotion; the structures that are part of this system form a fringe along the inner edge of the cerebrum.




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Multiple orgasms

One or more additional orgasms following the first, which occur within a short period of time and before the body has returned to a preplateau level of arousal.




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Myotonia

Muscle tension.




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Orgasmic platform

The thickening of the walls of the outer third of the vagina, due to vasocongestion, that occurs during the plateau phase of the sexual response cycle.




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Ovariectomy

Surgical removal of the ovaries.




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Pheromones

Chemical substances that are secreted externally by certain animals and that convey information to, or produce specific responses in, other members of the same species. (From the Greek pherein, which means “to bear [a message]” and hormone.)




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Plateau phase

The second phase of the sexual response cycle, which is characterized by increases in vasocongestion, muscle tension, heart rate, and blood pressure in preparation for orgasm.




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Primary erogenous zones

Erogenous zones that are particularly sensitive because they are richly endowed with nerve endings.




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Refractory period

A period of time following a response (e.g., orgasm) during which an individual is no longer responsive to stimulation (e.g., sexual stimulation).




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Resolution phase

The fourth phase of the sexual response cycle, during which the body gradually returns to its prearoused state.




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Secondary erogenous zones

Parts of the body that become erotically sensitized through experience.




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Secondary sex characteristics

Physical traits that differentiate males from females but are not directly involved in reproduction.




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Sex flush

A reddish rash that appears on the chest or breasts late in the excitement phase of the sexual response cycle.




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Sex skin

The reddening of the labia minora that occurs during the plateau phase.




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Sexual response cycle

Masters and Johnson's model of sexual response, which consists of four phases.




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Transsexual

A person with a gender-identity disorder who feels that he or she is really a member of the other gender and is trapped in a body of the wrong gender.




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Vasocongestion

The swelling of the genital tissues with blood, which causes erection of the penis and engorgement of the area surrounding the vaginal opening.




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Androgen-insensitivity syndrome

A form of intersexualism in which a genetic male is prenatally insensitive to androgens. As a result, his genitals do not become normally masculinized.




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Androgens

Male sex hormones.




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Autogynephilic

(aw-toe-gone-uh-FEE-lick) Descriptive of transsexuals who are sexually stimulated by fantasies that their own bodies are female. (From roots meaning “self,” “woman,” and “love” or “desire.”)




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Chromosome

One of the rodlike structures, found in the nucleus of every living cell, that carry the genetic code in the form of genes.




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Congenital adrenal hyperplasia

A form of intersexualism in which a genetic female has internal female sexual structures but masculinized external genitals.




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Cryptorchidism

The condition defined by undescended testes. (From roots that mean “hidden testes.”)




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Dominican Republic syndrome

A form of intersexualism in which a genetic enzyme disorder prevents testosterone from masculinizing the external genitalia.




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Embryo

The stage of prenatal development that begins with implantation of a fertilized ovum in the uterus and concludes with development of the major organ systems at about two months after conception.




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Female-superior position

A coital position in which the woman is on top.




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Gender assignment

The labelling of a newborn as a male or a female.




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Gender constancy

The concept that people's genders do not change, even if they alter their dress or behaviour.




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Gender dysphoria

A sense of incongruity between one's anatomic sex and gender identity.




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Gender identity

The psychological sense of being male or female.




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Gender roles

Complex clusters of ways in which males and females are expected to behave.




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Gender schema

A cluster of mental representations about male and female physical qualities, behaviours, and personality traits.




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Gender stability

The concept that people retain their genders for a lifetime.




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Gender typing

The process by which children acquire behaviour that is deemed appropariate to their gender.




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Hermaphrodites

People who possess both ovarian and testicular tissue. (From the names of the male and female Greek gods Hermes and Aphrodite.)




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Homosexual transsexuals

Extremely feminine gay males who seek sex reassignment.




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Identification

In psychoanalytic theory, the process of incorporating within ourselves our perceptions of the behaviours, thoughts, and feelings of others.




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Inguinal canal

A fetal canal that connects the scrotum and the testes, allowing the latter to descend. (From the Latin inguinus, which means “near the groin.”)




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Intersexual

A person who possesses the gonads of one gender but external genitalia that are ambiguous or typical of the other gender. (Also termed pseudohermaphrodite.)




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Intersexuality

All the different types of syndromes characterized by some abnormality or anomaly in physical sex differentiation.




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Klinefelter syndrome

A sex-chromosomal disorder caused by an extra X sex chromosome.




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Male-superior position

A coital position in which the man is on top.




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Oedipus complex

A conflict of the phallic stage in which the boy wishes to possess his mother sexually and perceives his father as a rival in love.




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Psychological androgyny

A state characterized by possession of both stereotypical masculine traits and stereotypical feminine traits.




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Schema

Concept; way of interpreting experience or processing information.




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Sexism

The prejudgment that because of gender, a person will possess certain negative traits.




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Sexual differentiation

The process by which males and females develop distinct reproductive anatomy.




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Socialization

The process of guiding people into socially acceptable behaviour patterns by means of information, rewards, and punishments.




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Stereotype

A fixed, oversimplified, conventional idea about a group of people.




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Testosterone

The male sex hormone that fosters the development of male sex characteristics and is connected with the sex drive.




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Transsexuals

People who strongly desire to be of the other gender and live as a person of the other gender.




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Turner syndrome

A sex-chromosomal disorder caused by loss of some X chromosome material.




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Zygote

A fertilized ovum (egg cell).




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Agape (AH-gah-pay)

Selfless love; a kind of love that is similar to generosity and charity.




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Anorexia nervosa

A potentially life-threatening eating disorder characterized by refusal to maintain a healthful body weight, intense fear of being overweight, a distorted body image, and, in females, lack of menstruation (amenorrhea).




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Eros

The kind of love that is closest in meaning to the modern-day concept of passion.




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Infatuation

A state of intense absorption in or focus on another person, which is usually accompanied by sexual desire, elation, and general physiological arousal or excitement; passion.




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Matching hypothesis

The concept that people tend to develop romantic relationships with people who are similar to themselves in attractiveness.




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Philia (FEEL-yuh)

Friendship love, which is based on liking and respect rather than sexual desire.




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Reciprocity

Mutual exchange. a




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Romantic love

A kind of love characterized by feelings of passion and intimacy.




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Storge (STORE-gay)

Loving attachment and nonsexual affection; the type of emotion that binds parents to children.




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ABCDE model

Levinger's view, which approaches romantic relationships in terms of five stages: Attraction, Building, Continuation, Deterioration, and Ending.




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Intimacy

Feelings of closeness and connectedness that are marked by the sharing of innermost thoughts and feelings.




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Mutual cyclical growth

The view that the need for one's partner promotes commitment; this commitment promotes acts that enhance the relationship; these acts build trust; and one's partner's commitment to the relationship increases.




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Self-disclosure

The revelation of personal—perhaps intimate—information.




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Small talk

A superficial kind of conversation that allows exchange of information but stresses breadth of topic coverage rather than in-depth discussion.




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Social exchange theory

The view that the development of a relationship reflects the unfolding of social exchanges—that is, the rewards and costs of maintaining the relationship as opposed to those of ending it.




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Anilingus

Oral stimulation of the anus aa




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Cunnilingus

Oral stimulation of the female genitals.




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Dildo

A penis-shaped object used in sexual activity.




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Fellatio

Oral stimulation of the male genitals.




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Foreplay

Physical interactions that are sexually stimulating and set the stage for intercourse.




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Masturbation

Sexual self-stimulation.




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Missionary position

The coital position in which the man is on top. Also termed the male-superior position.




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Activating effects

Those effects of sex hormones that influence the level of the sex drive, but not sexual orientation.




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Bisexuality

Erotic attraction to, and interest in developing romantic relationships with, males and females.




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Butch

A lesbian who assumes a traditional masculine gender role.




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Castration anxiety

In psychoanalytic theory, a man's fear that his genitals will be removed. Castration anxiety is an element of the Oedipus complex and is implicated in the directionality of erotic interests.




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Concordance

Agreement.




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Dizygotic (DZ) twins

Twins who develop from different fertilized ova; fraternal twins.




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Femme

A lesbian who assumes a traditional feminine gender role.




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Gay bashing

Violence against homosexuals.




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Gay males

Males who are erotically attracted to, and desire to form romantic relationships with, other males.




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Heteroerotic

Of an erotic nature and involving members of the other gender.




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Heterosexual orientation

Erotic attraction to, and preference for developing romantic relationships with, members of the other gender.




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Homoerotic

Of an erotic nature and involving members of one's own gender.




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Homophobia

A cluster of negative attitudes and feelings toward gay people, including intolerance, hatred, and fear.




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Homosexual orientation







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Lesbians

Females who are erotically attracted to, and desire to form romantic relationships with, other females. (After Lesbos, the Greek island on which, legend has it, female–female sexual activity was idealized.)




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Monozygotic (MZ) twins

Twins who develop from the same fertilized ovum; identical twins.




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Outing

The revelation of the identities of gay people by other gay people. The method is intended to combat discrimination against gay people by forcing individuals out of the closet and into the fray.




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Penis envy

In psychoanalytic theory, the girl's wish to have a penis.




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Sexual orientation

The direction of one's sexual interests—toward members of the same gender, members of the other gender, or both.




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Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)

A sexually transmitted infection that destroys white blood cells in the immune system, leaving the body vulnerable to various “opportunistic” infections.




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Age of viability

The age at which a fetus can sustain independent life.




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Amniotic fluid

Fluid within the amniotic sac that suspends and protects the fetus.




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Amniotic sac

The sac containing the fetus.




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Anoxia

Oxygen deprivation.




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Artificial insemination

The introduction of sperm into the reproductive tract through means other than sexual intercourse.




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Autoimmune response

The production of antibodies that attack naturally occurring substances that are (incorrectly) recognized as being foreign or harmful.




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Blastocyst

A stage of embryonic development within the germinal stage of prenatal development, at which the embryo is a sphere of cells surrounding a cavity of fluid.




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Braxton–Hicks contractions

So-called false labour contractions that are relatively painless.




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Breech presentation

Emergence of the baby feet first from the womb.




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Caesarean section

A method of childbirth in which the fetus is delivered through a surgical incision in the abdomen.




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Cephalic presentation

Emergence of the baby head first from the womb.




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Cephalocaudal

From the head downward. (From Latin roots that mean “head” and “tail.”)




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Critical period of vulnerability

A period of time during which an embryo or fetus is vulnerable to the effects of a teratogen.




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Dilate

To open or widen.




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Donor IVF

A variation of in vitro fertilization in which the ovum is taken from one woman, fertilized, and then injected into the uterus or fallopian tube of another woman. q




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Ectoderm

The outermost cell layer of the newly formed embryo, from which the skin and nervous system develop.




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Ectopic pregnancy

A pregnancy in which the fertilized ovum becomes implanted somewhere other than in the uterus.




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Efface

To become thin.




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Embryonic disk

The platelike inner part of the blastocyst, which differentiates into the ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm of the embryo.




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Embryonic stage

The stage of prenatal development that lasts from implantation through the eighth week and is characterized by the differentiation of the major organ systems.




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Embryonic transfer

A method of conception in which a woman volunteer is artificially inseminated by the male partner of the intended mother, after which the embryo is removed from the volunteer and inserted within the uterus of the intended mother.




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Endoderm

The inner layer of the newly formed embryo, from which the lungs and digestive system develop.




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Endometriosis

An abnormal condition in which endometrial tissue is sloughed off into the abdominal cavity rather than out of the body during menstruation. The condition is characterized by abdominal pain and may cause infertility.




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Episiotomy

A surgical incision in the perineum that widens the birth canal, preventing random tearing during childbirth.




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Fetal alcohol syndrome

A cluster of symptoms caused by maternal drinking, in which the child shows developmental lags and characteristic facial features such as an underdeveloped upper jaw, flattened nose, and widely spaced eyes.




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Gamete intrafallopian transfer (GIFT)

A method of conception in which sperm and ova are inserted into a fallopian tube to encourage conception.




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Germinal stage

The period of prenatal development before implantation in the uterus.




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Hegar's sign

Softness of a section of the uterus between the uterine body and the cervix, which indicates that a woman is pregnant.




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Human chorionic gonadotropin

A hormone produced by women shortly after conception, which stimulates the corpus luteum to continue to produce progesterone. The presence of HCG in a woman's urine indicates that she is pregnant.




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Hyaluronidase

An enzyme that briefly thins the zona pellucida, enabling one sperm to penetrate. (From roots that mean “substance that breaks down a glasslike fluid.”)




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In vitro fertilization

A method of conception in which mature ova are surgically removed from an ovary and placed in a laboratory dish along with sperm.




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Infertility

Inability to conceive a child.




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Lactation

Production of milk by the mammary glands.




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Lamaze method

A childbirth method in which women learn about childbirth, learn to relax and to breathe in patterns that conserve energy and lessen pain, and have a coach (usually the father) present at childbirth. Also termed prepared childbirth.




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Laparoscopy

A medical procedure in which a long, narrow tube (laparoscope) is inserted through an incision in the navel, permitting the visual inspection of organs in the pelvic cavity. (From the Greek lapara, which means “flank.”)




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Lochia

A reddish vaginal discharge that may persist for a month after delivery. (From the Greek lochios, which means “of childbirth.”)




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Mesoderm

The central layer of the embryo, from which the bones and muscles develop.




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Miscarriage

A spontaneous abortion.




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Morning sickness

Symptoms of pregnancy, including nausea, aversions to specific foods, and vomiting.




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Motility

Self-propulsion. A measure of the viability of sperm cells.




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Natural childbirth

A method of childbirth in which women use no anaesthesia but are given other strategies for coping with discomfort and are educated about childbirth.




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Neural tube

A hollow area in the blastocyst from which the nervous system will develop.




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Oxytocin

A pituitary hormone that stimulates uterine contractions.




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Perineum

The area between the vulva and the anus.




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Period of the ovum

Germinal stage.




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Placenta

An organ connected to the fetus by the umbilical cord. The placenta serves as a relay station between mother and fetus, allowing the exchange of nutrients and wastes.




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Postpartum depression

Persistent and severe mood changes during the postpartum period, involving feelings of despair and apathy and characterized by changes in appetite and sleep, low self-esteem, and difficulty concentrating.




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Postpartum

Following birth.




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Preterm

Born before 37 weeks of gestation.




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Prolactin

A pituitary hormone that stimulates production of milk. (From roots that mean “for milk.”)




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Prostaglandins

Uterine hormones that stimulate uterine contractions.a




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Proximodistal

From the central axis of the body outward. (From Latin roots that mean “near” and “far.”)




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Rh incompatibility

A condition in which antibodies produced by a pregnant woman are transmitted to the fetus and may cause brain damage or death.




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Rubella

A viral infection that can cause mental retardation and heart disease in an embryo. Also called German measles.




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Stillbirth

The birth of a dead fetus.




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Surrogate mother

A woman who is impregnated with the sperm of a prospective father via artificial insemination, carries the embryo and fetus to term, and then gives the child to the prospective parents.




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Sympathetic pregnancy

The experiencing of a number of signs of pregnancy by the father.




10

Syphilis

A sexually transmitted disease caused by a bacterial infection.




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Teratogens

Environmental influences or agents that can damage an embryo or fetus. (From the Greek teras, which means “monster.”)




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Toxemia

A life-threatening condition that is characterized by high blood pressure.




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Transition

The process during which the cervix becomes almost fully dilated and the head of the fetus begins to move into the birth canal.




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Transverse position

A crosswise birth position.




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Trophoblast

The outer part of the blastocyst, from which the amniotic sac, placenta, and umbilical cord develop.




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Umbilical cord

A tube that connects the fetus to the placenta.




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Zona pellucida

A gelatinous layer that surrounds an ovum. (From roots that mean “zone that light can shine through.”)




10

Zygote intrafallopian transfer (ZIFT)

A method of conception in which an ovum is fertilized in a laboratory dish and then placed in a fallopian tube.




11

Artificial contraception

A method of contraception that applies a human-made device.




11

Basal body temperature (BBT) method

A fertility awareness method of contraception that relies on prediction of ovulation by tracking the woman's temperature during the course of the menstrual cycle. .




11

Calendar method

A fertility awareness (rhythm) method of contraception that relies on prediction of ovulation by tracking menstrual cycles, typically for a 10- to 12-month period, and assuming that ovulation occurs 14 days before menstruation.




11

Combination pill

A birth-control pill that contains synthetic estrogen and progesterone.




11

Condom

A sheath made of animal membrane or latex that covers the penis during coitus and serves as a barrier to sperm following ejaculation.




11

Culpotomy

A kind of tubal sterilization in which the fallopian tubes are approached through an incision in the back wall of the vagina.




11

D&C

Abbreviation for dilation and curettage, an operation in which the cervix is dilated and the uterine contents are then gently scraped away.




11

D&E

Abbreviation for dilation and evacuation, an abortion method in which the cervix is dilated prior to vacuum aspiration and uterine contents are removed with forceps.




11

Diaphragm

A shallow rubber cup or dome, fitted to the contour of a woman's vagina, that is coated with a spermicide and inserted prior to coitus to prevent conception.




11

Douche

To rinse or wash the vaginal canal by inserting a liquid and allowing it to drain out.




11

Hysterectomy

Surgical removal of the uterus. (Not appropriate as a method of sterilization.)




11

Hysterotomy

An abortion method in which the fetus is removed by caesarean section.




11

Induced abortion

The purposeful termination of a pregnancy before the embryo or fetus is capable of sustaining independent life. (From the Latin abortio, which means “that which is miscarried.”)




11

Intra-amniotic infusion

An abortion method in which a substance is injected into the amniotic sac to induce premature labour. Also called instillation.




11

Intrauterine device

A small object that is inserted into the uterus and left in place to prevent conception. Abbreviated IUD.




11

Laparoscopy

Tubal sterilization by means of a laparoscope, which is inserted through a small incision just below the navel and used to cauterize, cut, or clamp the fallopian tubes. Sometimes referred to as “belly-button surgery.”




11

Minilaparotomy

A kind of tubal sterilization in which a small incision is made in the abdomen to provide access to the fallopian tubes.




11

Minipill

A birth-control pill that contains synthetic progesterone but no estrogen.




11

Oral contraceptive

A contraceptive, consisting of sex hormones, which is taken by mouth.




11

Ovulation method

A fertility awareness method of contraception that relies on prediction of ovulation by tracking the viscosity of the cervical mucus.




11

Peak days

The days during the menstrual cycle when a woman is most likely to be fertile.




11

Prophylactic

An agent that protects against disease.




11

Sterilization

Surgical procedures that render people incapable of reproduction without affecting sexual activity.




11

Tubal sterilization

The most common method of female sterilization, in which the fallopian tubes are surgically blocked to prevent the meeting of sperm and ova. Also called tubal ligation.




11

Vacuum aspiration

Removal of the uterine contents via suction. An abortion method used early in pregnancy. (From the Latin aspirare, which means “to breathe upon.”)




11

Vasectomy

The surgical method of male sterilization in which sperm are prevented from reaching the urethra by cutting each vas deferens and tying it back or cauterizing it.




11

Vasovasotomy

The surgical method of reversing vasectomy in which the cut or cauterized ends of the vas deferens are sewn together.




11

Viscosity

Stickiness, consistency.




12

Anovulatory

Without ovulation.




12

Celibacy

Complete sexual abstinence. (Sometimes used to describe the state of being unmarried, especially in the case of people who take vows to remain single.)




12

Cohabitation

Living together as though married but without legal sanction.




12

Comarital sex

Swinging; mate swapping.




12

Consensual adultery

Extramarital sex that is engaged in openly with the knowledge and consent of one's spouse.




12

Conventional adultery

Extramarital sex that is kept hidden from one's spouse.




12

Critical fat hypothesis

The view that girls must reach a certain body weight to trigger pubertal changes such as menarche.




12

Extramarital sex

Sexual relations between a married person and someone other than his or her spouse.




12

Group marriage

A social arrangement in which three or more people share an intimate relationship. Group marriages are illegal in Canada.




12

Gynecomastia

Overdevelopment of a male's breasts. (From Greek roots that mean “woman” [gyne] and “breast” [mastos].)




12

Homogamy

The practice of marrying someone who is similar to oneself in social background and standing. (From Greek roots that mean “same” [homos) and “marriage” [gamos].)




12

Larynx

A structure of muscle and cartilage that lies at the upper end of the trachea and contains the vocal cords; the voice box.




12

Menarche

(men-AR-kee) The onset of menstruation; first menstruation. (From Greek roots that mean “month” [men] and “beginning” [arche].)




12

Monogamy

Marriage to one person.




12

Nocturnal emission

Involuntary ejaculation of seminal fluid while asleep. Also referred to as a “wet dream,” although the individual need not be dreaming about sex, or dreaming at all, at the time.




12

Open marriage

A marriage characterized by the personal privacy of the spouses and the agreed-upon liberty of each spouse to form intimate relationships, which may include sexually intimate relationships, with people other than the spouse.




12

Polyamory

Any form of open relationship that allows for consensual sexual and/or emotional interactions with more than one partner.




12

Polyandry

A form of marriage in which a woman is married to more than one man at the same time.




12

Polygamy

Simultaneous marriage to more than one person.




12

Polygyny

A form of marriage in which a man is married to more than one woman at the same time.




12

Primary sex characteristics

Physical characteristics that differentiate males and females and are directly involved in reproduction, such as the sex organs.




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Puberty

The stage of development during which reproduction first becomes possible. Puberty begins with the appearance of secondary sex characteristics and ends when the long bones make no further gains in length. (From the Latin puber, which means “of ripe age.”)




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Secondary sex characteristics

Physical characteristics that differentiate males and females and that usually appear at puberty but are not directly involved in reproduction, such as the bodily distribution of hair and fat, the development of muscle mass, and deepening of the voice.




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Serial monogamy

A pattern of becoming involved in one exclusive relationship after another, as opposed to engaging in multiple sexual relationships at the same time.




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Swinging

A form of consensual adultery in which both spouses share extramarital sexual experiences. Also referred to as mate swapping.




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Anorgasmic

Never having reached orgasm. (Literally, “without orgasm.”)




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Dyspareunia

A sexual dysfunction characterized by persistent or recurrent pain during sexual intercourse. (From roots that mean “badly paired.”)




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Male erectile disorder

Persistent difficulty getting or maintaining an erection sufficient to allow the man to engage in or complete sexual intercourse. Also termed erectile dysfunction.




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Orgasmic disorders

Sexual dysfunctions in which people persistently or recurrently have difficulty reaching orgasm despite attaining a level of sexual stimulation that would normally result in orgasm, or reach orgasm more rapidly than they would like.




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Performance anxiety

Anxiety concerning one's ability to perform behaviours, especially behaviours that may be evaluated by other people.




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Premature ejaculation

A sexual dysfunction in which ejaculation occurs with minimal sexual stimulation and before the man desires it.




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Sensate focus exercises

Exercises in which sex partners take turns giving and receiving pleasurable stimulation in nongenital areas of the body.




13

Sex therapy

A collective term for short-term behavioural models for treatment of sexual dysfunctions.




13

Sexual arousal disorders

Sexual dysfunctions in which people persistently or recurrently fail to become adequately sexually aroused to engage in or sustain sexual intercourse.




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Sexual desire disorders

Sexual dysfunctions in which people have persistent or recurrent lack of sexual desire or aversion to sexual contact.




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Sexual dysfunctions

Persistent or recurrent difficulties in becoming sexually aroused or reaching orgasm.




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Sexual pain disorder

Sexual dysfunctions in which people persistently or recurrently experience pain during coitus.




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Squeeze technique

A method for treating premature ejaculation whereby the tip of the penis is squeezed to prevent ejaculation temporarily.




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Tumescence

Swelling; erection. (From the Latin tumere, which means “to swell.” Tumour has the same root.)




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Vaginismus

A sexual dysfunction characterized by involuntary contraction of the muscles surrounding the vaginal barrel, preventing penile penetration or rendering penetration painful.




13

Vasocongestion

Engorgement of blood vessels with blood, which swells the genitals and breasts during sexual arousal.




14

Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)

A condition caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and characterized by destruction of the immune system so that the body is stripped of its ability to fend off life-threatening diseases.




14

Antibodies

Specialized proteins produced by the white blood cells of the immune system in response to disease organisms and other toxic substances. Antibodies recognize and attack the invading organisms or substances.




14

Antibodies

Specialized proteins that develop in the body in response to antigens and that inactivate foreign bodies.




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Antigen

A protein, toxin, or other substance to which the body reacts by producing antibodies. (Combined word formed from antibody generator.)




14

Bacteria

Plural of bacterium, a class of one-celled micro-organisms that have no chlorophyll and can give rise to many illnesses. (From the Greek baktron, which means “stick,” referring to the fact that many bacteria are rod-shaped.)




14

Bacterial vaginosis

A form of vaginitis usually caused by the Gardnerella vaginalis bacterium.




14

Candidiasis

A form of vaginitis caused by a yeast-like fungus, Candida albicans.




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Cervicitis

Inflammation of the cervix.




14

Chancre

A sore or ulcer.




14

Chancroid

An STI caused by the Hemophilus ducreyi bacterium. Also called soft chancre.




14

Congenital syphilis

A syphilis infection that is present at birth.




14

Ectoparasites

Parasites that live on the outside of the host's body—in contrast to endoparasites, which live within the body. (From the Greek ektos, which means “outside.”)




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Elephantiasis

A disease characterized by enlargement of parts of the body, especially the legs and genitals, and by hardening and ulceration of the surrounding skin. (From the Greek elephas, which means “elephant,” referring to the resemblance of the affected skin areas to elephant hide.)




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Epididymitis

Inflammation of the epididymis.




14

Genital herpes

An STI caused by the Herpes simplex virus type 2 and characterized by painful, shallow sores and blisters on the genitals.




14

Genital warts

An STI that is caused by the human papilloma virus and takes the form of warts that appear around the genitals and anus.




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Gonorrhea

An STI caused by the Neisseria gonorrhoeae bacterium and characterized by a discharge and burning urination. Left untreated, gonorrhea can give rise to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and infertility. (From the Greek gonos, which means “seed,” and rheein, which means “to flow,” referring to the fact that in ancient times, the penile discharge characteristic of the illness was erroneously interpreted as a loss of seminal fluid.)




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Granuloma inguinale

A tropical STI caused by the Calymmatobacterium granulomatousbacterium.




14

HAART

(pronounced HEART) The acronym for “highly active antiretroviral therapy,” which refers to the combination, or “cocktail,” of drugs used to treat HIV/ AIDS: a protease inhibitor in combination with a couple of other antiretroviral agents.




14

Hepatitis

An inflammation of the liver. (From the Greek hepar, which means “liver.”)




14

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)

A sexually transmitted virus that destroys white blood cells in the immune system, leaving the body vulnerable to life-threatening diseases.




14

Immune system

A term for the body's complex of mechanisms for protecting itself from disease-causing agents such as pathogens.




14

Inflammation

Redness and warmth that develop at the site of an injury, reflecting the dilation of blood vessels that permits the expanded flow of leukocytes to the region.




14

Jaundice

A yellowish discoloration of the skin and the whites of the eyes. (From the Old French jaune, which meaans “yellow.”)




14

Leukocytes

White blood cells that are essential to the body's defences against infection. (From the Greek leukos, which means “white” and kytos, which means “a hollow” and is used in combination with other word forms to mean “cell.”)




14

Lymphogranuloma venereum

A tropical STI caused by the Chlamydia trachomatis bacterium.




14

Ocular herpes

A herpes infection of the eye, usually caused by touching an infected area of the body and then touching the eye.




14

Ophthalmia neonatorum

A gonorrheal infection of the eyes of newborn children, who contract the disease by passing through an infected birth canal. (From the Greek ophthalmos, which means “eye.”)




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Opportunistic diseases

Diseases that take hold only when the immune system is weakened and unable to fend them off. Kaposi's sarcoma and pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) are examples of opportunistic diseases found in people with AIDS.




14

Outercourse

Forms of sexual expression, such as massage, hugging, caressing, mutual masturbation, and rubbing bodies together, that do not involve the exchange of body fluids. (Contrast with intercourse.)




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Pathogen

An agent, especially a micro-organism, that can cause a disease. (From the Greek pathos, which means “suffering” or “disease,” and genic, which means “forming” or “coming into being.”)




14

Pediculosis

A parasitic infestation by pubic lice (Pthirus pubis) that causes itching.




14

Pelvic inflammatory disease

Inflammation of the pelvic region—possibly including the cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, abdominal cavity, and ovaries—that can be caused by organisms such as Neisseria gonorrhoeae. Its symptoms are abdominal pain, tenderness, nausea, fever, and irregular menstrual cycles. The condition may lead to infertility.




14

Pharyngeal gonorrhea

A gonorrheal infection of the pharynx (the cavity leading from the mouth and nasal passages to the larynx and esophagus) that is characterized by a sore throat.




14

Prodromal symptoms

Warning symptoms that signal the onset or flare-up of a disease. (From the Greek prodromos, which means “forerunner.”)




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Scabies

A parasitic infestation caused by a tiny mite (Sarcoptes scabiei) that causes itching.




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Seronegative

Lacking a pathogen or antibodies to that pathogen in the bloodstream.




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Seropositive

Having a pathogen or antibodies to that pathogen in the bloodstream.




14

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

Infections that are communicated through sexual contact. (Some, such as HIV/AIDS, can also be transmitted in other ways.)




14

Shigellosis

An STI caused by the Shigella bacterium.




14

Syphilis

An STI that is caused by the Treponema pallidum bacterium and may progress through several stages of development—often from a chancre to a skin rash to damage to the cardiovascular or central nervous system. (From the Greek siphlos, which means “maimed” or “crippled.”)




14

Trichomoniasis

A form of vaginitis caused by the protozoan Trichomonas vaginalis.




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Vaginitis

Any type of vaginal infection or inflammation.




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VDRL

The test named after the Venereal Disease Research Laboratory of the U.S. Public Health Service that checks for the presence of antibodies to Treponema pallidum in the blood.




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