The MacLeod Laboratory offers a complete Infertility evaluation, treatment for Primary or Secondary InfertilityRead Online Buy it on amazon
A. Toth, M.D.
Obstetrician, Gynecologist, & Pathologist
Abortion: a premature ending of a pregnancy that is either induced or spontaneous (i.e., a miscarriage).
Adhesion: scar tissue that develops on the site of an infection, inflammation, or surgical incision and that can prevent normal egg or sperm passage and/or interfere with zygote implantation.
Amenorrhea: the absence of menstruation.
Anaerobic Bacteria: a type of bacteria that can survive in an oxygen-poor environment. In the genital tract, some kinds of anaerobic bacteria can cause infections that may lead to infertility.
Artificial Insemination (AI): the insertion of a sperm sample inside the female genital tract by artificial means. "Donor insemination (AID)" refers to sperm from a man other than the woman's partner.
Asymptomatic: exhibiting no symptoms.
Bacteria: single-celled living organisms, some of which can trigger infections in the reproductive system.
Basal Body Temperature (BBT): the lowest body temperature during the day (usually early morning). For a woman, the BBT has a pattern of being lower than normal prior to ovulation and higher than normal after ovulation.
Biopsy: a small sample of body tissue removed for microscopic examination.
Capacitation: the process of preparing sperm by artificial means so that their chances of fertilizing an egg are enhanced.
Cervix: the tube-like lowermost portion of the uterus that opens into the vagina. "Cervicitis" refers to inflammation of the cervix.
Chlamydia: a kind of bacteria that is responsible for infections of the genital tract, especially through sexual transmission.
Chlomiphene: a fertility drug (marketed as Clomid or Serophene) that stimulates ovulation.
Corpus Luteum: literally, a "yellow body" that forms in the ovary on the site where an egg has been released and that produces progesterone to facilitate a pregnancy.
Diethylstilbestrol (DES): a synthetic estrogen, taken by women in the past to prevent miscarriages, that has been associated with infertility and other reproductive health problems in some male and female offspring.
Dilation and Curettage (D&C): an operation in which the cervix is stretched to permit scraping of the uterine lining.
Ectopic Pregnancy: a pregnancy that takes place outside of its normal location, the uterus. Ectopic pregnancies most often occur in a fallopian tube.
Egg: the female reproductive cell, also called an "ovum" or "oocyte."
Embryo: the fertilized egg after it has divided and until the end of its second month of development.
Embryo Transfer: the process of taking an embryo that has developed in vitro and placing it in the uterus for implantation and further development.
Endometrium: the lining of the uterus that swells after ovulation to receive an egg and is sloughed off during menstruation if implantation doesn't take place. "Endometritis" refers to inflammation of the endometrium. "Endometriosis" refers to growth of the endometrium outside the uterus, which can result in damage to the reproductive system and, possibly, infertility.
Epididymis: a thin, coiled, tube-like structure through which sperm travel from the testicles to the vas deferens. "Epididymitis" refers to inflammation of the epididymis.
Estrogen: a female sex hormone that stimulates egg and endometrium development prior to fertilization.
Fallopian Tube: a narrow duct (there are two in the female genital tract) that receives the egg from the ovary, and in which the egg and the sperm meet for fertilization. "Salpingitis" refers to inflammation of the fallopian tube.
Fertilization: the union of the sperm with the egg in the fallopian tube, representing the initial step in a pregnancy.
Fetus: the unborn baby from its second month of development until its birth.
Fibroid Tumor: a tumor in the uterus that may interfere with pregnancy.
Gamete: a reproductive cell, either egg or sperm.
Gamete Intrafallopian Transfer (GIFT): a surgical process' whereby eggs and sperm are put together outside of the woman's body and then placed inside her fallopian tube for fertilization to occur.
Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG): female hormone that stimulates ovulation (often injected as a fertility drug).
Hysterosalpingogram: an X-ray examination of the uterus and the fallopian tubes.
Hysteroscopy: an examination of the uterus by means of a thin instrument inserted through the cervix.
Intratubal Insemination (ITI): artificial insemination in which the sperm are placed into the fallopian tubes instead of the vagina (the most common target of artificial insemination).
Intrauterine Insemination (IUI): artificial insemination in which the sperm are placed into the uterus.
In Vitro Fertilization: fertilization outside the body ("in vitro" is Latin for "in a glass").
Karyotyping: a test that analyzes chromosomes to determine if there is a genetic basis for repeated miscarriages.
Laparoscopy: a surgical procedure in which a thin, telescope-like instrument is inserted into the abdominal cavity to visualize or repair reproductive health problems.
Luteal Phase: the postovulation phase of the menstrual cycle. "Luteal phase defect" refers to the inadequate production of hormones during this phase to support a pregnancy.
Menarche: the time when a woman has her first menstruation.
Menopause: the time when a woman ceases to menstruate for natural, age-related reasons.
Microsurgery: surgery performed on the genital tract using microscopic instruments under magnification.
Miscarriage: a spontaneous abortion, or termination, of a pregnancy.
Mycoplasma: a type of bacteria that can cause infections in the genital tract.
Oligospermia: a low sperm count.
Ovary: the female gonad (there are two ovaries in the female genital tract) that produces eggs and hormones. "Oophoritis" refers to inflammation of the ovary.
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID): an infection occurring in the female reproductive system, of which vaginitis, cervicitis, salpingitis, and oophoritis are subsets.
Pergonal: a fertility drug used to induce ovulation.
Postcoital Test: a test performed on cervical mucus a few hours after intercourse to determine the number and motility of sperm.
Progesterone: a female hormone produced by the ovary that prepares the uterine lining for egg implantation.
Semen: fluid containing the sperm and nourishing secretions that is expelled from the male reproductive system by means of ejaculation.
Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD): a reproductive health problem attributable to an infectious agent passed from one partner to another during sexual intercourse.
Sperm: the male reproductive cell. "Sperm antibodies" refers to agents in the man's or woman's body fluids produced by the immune system that reduce fertility by harming or killing sperm. "Sperm count" refers to the number of sperm in an ejaculate. "Sperm motility" refers to the movement capabilities of individual sperm. "Sperm morphology" refers to the structure of individual sperm.
Split-Ejaculate: seminal fluid with an enhanced concentration of Sperm created by splitting an ejaculated semen sample (the first half of the ejaculate contains most of the sperm).
Superovulation: the production of multiple eggs during a single menstrual cycle stimulated by fertility drugs.
Testicles: the male gonad (there are two testicles in the male genital tract) that produces sperm and hormones.
Testosterone: the primary male sex hormone that contributes to sperm production.
Ultrasound: a technique of visualizing the interior of the body, including the genital tract, using sound-wave emissions.
Ureaplasma: the smallest known member of the mycoplasma family.
Uterus: the womb.
Vagina: the "birth canal" leading from the vulva to the cervix. "Vaginitis" refers to inflammation of the vagina.
Varicocele: an enlarged vein in the scrotum that can lead to infertility.
Vas Deferens: the tube through which sperm pass from the epididymis to the urethra. "Vasectomy" refers to a surgical sterilization of this tube.
Zona Pellucida: the protective surface layer of the egg.
Zygote: a fertilized egg that has not yet divided.Zygote Intrafallopian Transfer (ZIFT): in vitro fertilization that involves creating a zygote outside the body and then placing it into the fallopian tube.