Glossary of Terms

  • Birth Control: Prevention of pregnancy.
  • Cervix: The lower, narrow end of the uterus, which protrudes into the vagina.
  • Condom: A thin sheath used to cover the penis during sex to prevent sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy.
  • Menstrual Period: The discharge of blood and tissue from the uterus that occurs when an egg is not fertilized (also called menstruation).
  • Obstetrician–gynecologist (ob-gyn): A physician with special skills, training, and education in women’s health.
  • Pap Test: A test in which cells are taken from the cervix and vagina and examined under a microscope.
  • Pelvic Exam: A manual examination of a woman’s reproductive organs.
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs): Diseases that are spread by sexual contact.
  • Speculum: An instrument used to hold open the walls of the vagina.
  • Vagina: A tube-like structure surrounded by muscles leading from the uterus to the outside of the body.
  • Vulva: The external female genital area.
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