The time in a young woman’s life when menstrual periods begin.


Self-stimulation of the genitals, usually resulting in orgasm.


 A procedure in which X-rays of the breast are used to detect breast cancer.


A nearly colorless fluid that bathes the body cells and moves through a system of lymph vessels and nodes in the body.


Surgical removal of a breast lump; also biopsy.

Lichen Sclerosus

A skin disease occurring most often on the vulva. The disease causes itching, and, in later stages, easy bruising, tearing, and pain. Infected skin is usually white and sometimes there is a fine, crinkled texture.

Lichen Planus

A skin disease that can sometimes affect the vulva, vagina, and inside the mouth. The disease may cause infected areas to be white or to have superficial ulcerations, with accompanying itching and pain.


Benign (not cancerous) tumors made of muscle tissue that grow in the uterus and may cause pain or bleeding; commonly called fibroids.


A surgical procedure in which a slender, light-transmitting instrument, the laparoscope, is used to view the pelvic organs.


 A slender, light-transmitting instrument that is used to view the pelvic organs or perform surgery.

Kegel Exercises

Pelvic muscle exercises that assist in bladder and bowel control.

Insulin Resistance

A condition in which an individual requires a high level of insulin in order to maintain a normal blood sugar.

Informed Consent

The process by which a patient gains an understanding of what will be involved in receiving a medical treatment or procedure, including why it is being done, its risks, and other alternatives, before agreeing to treatment.


A condition in which a woman has been unable to get pregnant after 12 months without the use of any form of birth control.

Induced Abortion

The planned termination of a pregnancy before the fetus can survive outside the uterus.


The inability in a male to have an erection or to sustain it until ejaculation or intercourse takes place.


A surgical procedure in which a slender light-transmitting telescope, a hysteroscope, is used to view the inside of the uterus.