header image Professor Hakim Dilshad Hussain Tabssum (Gold Medalist) Ex-member: American Infertility Association (USA)
 
 

Glossary

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Published by Tibb-e-Islami Dawakhana (r) for Reproductive Medicine under the direction of the Patient Education Committee and the Publications Committee. Copyright of Tibb-e-Islami Dawakhana (r).

Chief Executive & Physician

Professor Hakim Dilshad Hussain Tabassum

 

Abdominal pregnancy. An ectopic (extrauterine pregnancy) pregnancy that has implanted on structures in the abdomen other than the uterus, fallopian tubes, or ovaries. It usually implants on tissue in the abdomen known as the omentum.

Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). A condition caused by the HIV virus that impairs the body’s immune system and leads to severe infections and eventually death.

Acrosome. An enzyme-filled cap on the sperm head which releases acrosomal enzymes necessary to penetrate the egg’s outer covering.

Adhesions. Bands of fibrous scar tissue that bind pelvic organs together.

Adrenal glands. A pair of endocrine organs located above the kidneys that produce hormones.

Adrenal hyperplasia. An abnormal or unusual increase in the production of androgens by the adrenal glands. This disorder is the result of a genetic problem.

Amenorrhea. Absence of menstrual cycles.

Amniocentesis. A procedure in which a small amount of amniotic fluid is removed through a needle from the fetal sac at about 16 weeks into a pregnancy. The fluid is studied for chromosomal abnormalities which may affect fetal development.

ACTH (adrenalcorticoid hormone). A protein hormone produced by the pituitary gland that stimulates the adrenal gland to produce hormones.

Androgens. The “male” hormones responsible for encouraging masculine characteristics.

Anticardiolipids. A type of antibody or immunoglobulin that affects the blood clotting system and may be associated with repeated miscarriage.

Antisperm antibodies. Immune or protective proteins (immunoglobulins) which attack and destroy the sperm because they recognize it as a foreign substance. Antisperm antibodies may be present in the male in blood or sperm or in the female in blood or cervical mucus.

Anovulation. Failure or absence of ovulation.

Appendicitis. A condition where the appendix (a tubular structure attached to the large colon) becomes infected and inflamed and can be associated with the formation of adhesions in the proximity of the fallopian tube.

Assay. A medical term meaning “test.”

Assisted reproductive technologies (ART). All treatments which include laboratory handling of eggs, sperm, and/or embryos. Some examples of ART are in vitro fertilization (IVF), gamete intrafallopian transfer (GIFT), pronuclear stage tubal transfer (PROST), tubal embryo transfer (TET), and zygote intrafallopian transfer (ZIFT).

Autoimmune. A condition in which the body’s immune system attacks its own tissues, falsely recognizing them as foreign.

Azoospermia. The complete absence of sperm in the semen.

Basal body temperature (BBT). The body temperature at rest. It is taken orally each morning immediately upon awakening and recorded on a BBT chart. The readings are studied to help identify ovulation, usually occurring near the time of the rise in BBT.

Biopsy. The removal of a small tissue sample for microscopic examination.

Cerclage. Placement of a non-absorbable suture around an incompetent (weak) cervical opening in an attempt to keep it closed and thus prevent miscarriage. Also known as a cervical stitch.

Cervical canal. The passageway leading from the vagina into the uterus.

Cervical mucus. The substance in the cervix through which sperm must swim in order to enter the uterus.

Cervix. The narrow, lower part of the uterus that opens into the vagina. The cervical canal runs through the cervix and connects the vagina with the uterine cavity. The cervix produces mucus which sperm must swim through before entering the uterine cavity and then the fallopian tubes.

Chlamydia. A sexually transmitted disease that is a common cause of pelvic infections and subsequent tubal damage.

 

 

 

 

 

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