Menopause Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Menopause article.

Absorb: 1. To take something in, as through the skin or the intestine.
2....

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Absorption: Uptake. For example, intestinal absorption is the uptake of food (or other sub...

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Acetate: A molecular ion derived from acetic acid. The formula of acetate is CH3COO-.

Acupuncture: The practice of inserting needles into the body to reduce pain or induce anes...

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Aerobic: Oxygen-requiring. Aerobic bacteria need oxygen to grow. Aerobic exercise requires...

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Aerobic exercise: Brisk exercise that promotes the circulation of oxygen through the blood...

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Aging: The process of becoming older, a process that is genetically determined and environ...

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Alternative medicine: Alternative medicine is the term for medical products and practices ...

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Anxiety: A feeling of apprehension and fear, characterized by physical symptoms such as pa...

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Atresia: Absence of a normal opening, or failure of a structure to be tubular. Atresia can...

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Biofeedback: A method of treatment that uses a monitor to measure patients' physiologic in...

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Bioidentical hormone therapy: Treatment with hormone medications that contain hormones tha...

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Birth control: Birth control is the use of any practices, methods, or devices to prevent p...

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Blood clots: Blood that has been converted from a liquid to a solid state. Also called a t...

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Blood pressure: The blood pressure is the pressure of the blood within the arteries. It is...

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Bone density: Bone density is the amount of bone tissue in a certain volume of bone. It ca...

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Bone mineral density: BMD, a measure of bone density, reflecting the strength of bones as ...

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Brain: The portion of the central nervous system that is located within the skull. It func...

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Breast cancer: Breast cancer is diagnosed with self- and physician-examination of the brea...

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Breathing: The process of respiration, during which air is inhaled into the lungs through ...

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Caffeine: A stimulant compound found naturally in coffee, tea, cocoa (chocolate), and kola...

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Calcitonin: A hormone produced by the thyroid gland that lowers the levels of calcium and ...

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Calcium: A mineral found mainly in the hard part of bones, where it is stored. Calcium is ...

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Cancer: An abnormal growth of cells which tend to proliferate in an uncontrolled way and, ...

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Cardiovascular: Relating to the circulatory system, which comprises the heart and blood ve...

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Cholesterol: The most common type of steroid in the body. Cholesterol has a reputation for...

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Clinical trials: Trials to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of medications or medical...

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Colon: The long, coiled, tubelike organ that removes water from digested food. The remaini...

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Colon cancer: A malignant tumor arising from the inner wall of the large intestine (the co...

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Constipation: Infrequent and frequently incomplete bowel movements. Constipation is the op...

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Cure: 1. To heal, to make well, to restore to good health. 2. A time withou...

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Cysts: Cysts are abnormal, closed sac-like structures within a tissue that contain a liqui...

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Depression: An illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts and that affects the way...

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DEXA: Dual energy X-ray absorptometry. See: DXA.

Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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Discharge: 1.The flow of fluid from part of the body, such as from the nose or vag...

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Dizziness: Painless head discomfort with many possible causes including disturbances of ...

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Dry mouth: The condition of not having enough saliva to keep the mouth wet. This is due to...

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Endometrial cancer: Cancer of the womb (the uterus ). Endometrial cancer occurs most often...

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Estrogen: A female steroid hormone that is produced by the ovaries and, in lesser amounts,...

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Estrogens: Female hormones produced by the ovaries. Estrogen deficiency can lead to osteop...

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Evening primrose oil: A natural source of essential fatty acids (EFOs).

FDA: Food and Drug Administration.

Food and Drug Administration: An agency within the US Public Health Service that provides ...

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Fracture: A break in bone or cartilage. Although usually a result of trauma, a fracture ca...

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Gallstones: Stones that form when substances in the bile harden. Gallstones can be as smal...

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Heart: The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. ...

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Heart attack: The death of heart muscle due to the loss of blood supply. The loss of bloo...

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Heart disease: Any disorder that affects the heart. Sometimes the term "heart disease" is ...

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Herbal: 1. An adjective, referring to herbs, as in an herbal tea.
2. A...

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Hormone: A chemical substance produced in the body that controls and regulates the activit...

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Hormone therapy: Treatment of disease or symptoms with synthetic or naturally derived horm...

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Hot flashes: A sudden wave of mild or intense body heat caused by rushes of hormonal chang...

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Hypnosis: A part of healing from ancient times. The induction of trance states and the use...

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Incontinence: The inability to control excretions, to hold urine in the bladder, or to kee...

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Indicate: In medicine, to make a treatment or procedure advisable because of a particular ...

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Insomnia: The perception or complaint of inadequate or poor-quality sleep due to a number ...

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Kidney: One of a pair of organs located in the right and left side of the abdomen. The kid...

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Laboratory: A place for doing tests and research procedures, and for preparing chemicals a...

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Last menstrual period: By convention, pregnancies are dated in weeks starting from the fir...

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LDL cholesterol: Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, commonly referred to as 'bad' choles...

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Libido: 1. Sexual drive. 2. In psychoanalysis, the psychic energy from all ...

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Liver: The largest solid organ in the body, situated in the upper part of the abdomen on t...

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Mammogram: An X-ray of the breast that is taken with a device that compresses and flattens...

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Medical history: 1. In clinical medicine, the patient's past and present which may ...

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Meditation: A typically self-directed practice for relaxing the body and calming the mind....

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Menopause: The time in a woman's life when menstrual periods permanently stop; it is also ...

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Menstrual: Pertaining to menstruation (the menses), as in last menstrual period, menstrua...

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Menstrual cycle: The monthly cycle of changes in the ovaries and the lining of the uteru...

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Metabolism: The whole range of biochemical processes that occur within a living organism. ...

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Mouth: 1. The upper opening of the digestive tract, beginning with the lips and con...

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Nasal: Having to do with the nose.

Nausea: Stomach queasiness, the urge to vomit. Nausea can be brought on by many causes, in...

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Onset: In medicine, the first appearance of the signs or symptoms of an illness as, for ex...

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Osteopenia: Mild thinning of the bone mass. Osteopenia represents a low bone mass and is n...

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Osteoporosis: Thinning of the bones, with reduction in bone mass, due to depletion of calc...

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Ounce: A measure of weight equal to 1/16th of a pound or, metrically, 28.35 gra...

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Ovarian: Of or pertaining to the ovary.

Ovulation: The release of the ripe egg (ovum) from the ovary. The egg is released when the...

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Pain: An unpleasant sensation that can range from mild, localized discomfort to agony. Pa...

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Palpitations: Unpleasant sensations of irregular and/or forceful beating of the heart. In ...

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Parathyroid hormone: See Parathormone.

Pelvic: Having to do with the pelvis, the lower part of the abdomen, located between the h...

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Pelvic exam: An examination of the organs of the female reproductive system.

Perimenopause: The time in a woman's life when physiological changes occur that begin the...

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Pharmacopeia: An official authoritative listing of medications. Some countries, such as th...

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Placebo: A "sugar pill" or any dummy medication or treatment.

Postmenopausal: After menopause, the period of time after a woman has experienced 12 conse...

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Pregnancy: The state of carrying a developing embryo or fetus within the female body. Thi...

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Pregnant: The state of carrying a developing fetus within the body.

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Premature menopause: Menopause (permanent cessation of menses) occurring before age 40. Pr...

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Prescription: A physician's order for the preparation and administration of a drug or dev...

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Progesterone: A female hormone, the principal hormone that prepares the uterus to receive ...

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Progestin: Any one of a group of steroid hormones that have the effect of progesterone.

Protein: One of the three nutrients used as energy sources (calories) by the body. Protein...

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Pulse: The rhythmic dilation of an artery that results from beating of the heart. Pulse is...

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Receptor: 1. In cell biology, a structure on the surface of a cell (or inside a cel...

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Remedy: Something that consistently helps treat or cure a disease.

Resorption: The process of losing substance. For example, when bone is surgically reshaped...

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Respiration: The act of inhaling and exhaling air in order to exchange oxygen for carbon d...

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Reuptake: The reabsorption of a secreted substance by the cell that originally produced an...

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Sarcoidosis: A disease of unknown origin that causes small lumps (granulomas) due to chron...

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Scan: As a noun, the data or image obtained from the examination of organs or regions of...

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SERM: Selective estrogen-receptor modulator.

Serotonin: A neurotransmitter that is involved in the transmission of nerve impulses. Sero...

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Sleeplessness: Insomnia. See also Fatal familial insomnia.

Spine: 1) The column of bone known as the vertebral column, which surrounds and protects ...

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SSRI: Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, one of a family of antidepressant medication...

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Stomach: The digestive organ that is located in the upper abdomen, under the ribs. The upp...

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Stroke: The sudden death of brain cells due to lack of oxygen, caused by blockage of blood...

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Substance: 1. Material with particular features.
2. The material that...

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Menopause, surgical: Surgical menopause is, not unexpectedly, menopause induced by surger...

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Sweating: The act of secreting fluid from the skin by the sweat (sudoriferous) glands. The...

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Symptom: Any subjective evidence of disease. In contrast, a sign is objective. Blood comin...

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Therapy: The treatment of disease. Therapy is synonymous with treatment.

Trigger: Something that either sets off a disease in people who are genetically predispose...

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Ultrasound: High-frequency sound waves. Ultra-sound waves can be bounced off tissues by us...

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United States Pharmacopeia: Abbreviated USP. A publication, established in 1820, that cont...

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Urinary: Having to do with the function or anatomy of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, or ur...

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Urinary incontinence: The unintentional loss of urine. Inability to hold urine in the blad...

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Uterus: A hollow, pear-shaped organ that is located in a woman's lower abdomen, between th...

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Vaginal discharge: Vaginal discharge is a fluid produced by glands in the vaginal wall and...

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Vitamin D: A steroid vitamin which promotes the intestinal absorption and metabolism of ca...

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Voluntary: Done in accordance with the conscious will of the individual. The opposite of i...

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World Health Organization: The subagency of the United Nations (UN) that is concerned with...

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X-ray: High-energy radiation with waves shorter than those of visible light. X-ray is used...

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Yogurt: A dairy product made by fermented milk with one or more bacterial cultures. It has...

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Medical Dictionary