Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) article.

Abnormal: Outside the expected norm, or uncharacteristic of a particular patient.

Abscess: A local accumulation of pus anywhere in the body. The following are some example...

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Abstinence: The voluntary self-denial of food, drink, or sex. Today, abstinence most commo...

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Acute: Of abrupt onset, in reference to a disease. Acute often also connotes an illness th...

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Antibiotic: A drug used to treat infections caused by bacteria and other microorganisms. ...

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Antifungal: A medication that limits or prevents the growth of yeasts and other fungal org...

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Anus: The opening of the rectum to the outside of the body.

B virus: An infectious agent commonly found among macaque monkeys, including rhesus macaqu...

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Bacteria: Single-celled microorganisms that can exist either as independent (free-living) ...

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Blindness: Loss of useful sight. Blindness can be temporary or permanent. Damage to any p...

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Blister: A collection of fluid underneath the top layer of skin (epidermis). There are man...

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Buboes: The plural of "bubo".

Bumps: The raised area of a bump or bruise results from blood leaking from these injured b...

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

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Cancer of the cervix: See: Cervical cancer.

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Candida albicans: A yeast-like fungal organism found in small amounts in the normal human...

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Candidiasis: Disease caused by the yeast Candida albicans. Candida albicans can cause vagi...

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CDC: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the US agency charged with tracking a...

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Cervix: The cervix is the lower, narrow part of the uterus (womb). The uterus, a hollow, ...

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Chancroid: A sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the bacterium Haemophilus ducr...

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Chills: feelings of coldness accompanied by shivering. Chills may develop after exposure t...

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Chlamydia: The agent of a sexually transmitted disease, a type of bacteria found in the ce...

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Chlamydia trachomatis: A bacterium that causes a disease called trachoma that results in b...

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Chronic: In medicine, lasting a long time. A chronic condition is one that lasts 3 months ...

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Cirrhosis: Liver disease characterized by irreversible scarring. Alcohol and viral hepatit...

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Cough: A rapid expulsion of air from the lungs, typically in order to clear the lung airwa...

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Crabs: Slang for pubic lice, parasitic insects that can infest in the genital area of huma...

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Cryotherapy: Literally, "cold therapy." Cryotherapy, sometimes referred to as cryosurgery,...

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Curable: Amenable to a cure, capable of being cured, to being healed and made well. From ...

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

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Dementia: Significant loss of intellectual abilities, such as memory capacity, that is sev...

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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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Douching: Using water or a medicated solution to clean the vagina and cervix or any other ...

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Drain: A device for removing fluid from a cavity or wound. A drain is typically a tube or ...

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Ectopic: In the wrong place, out of place. For example, an ectopic kidney is a kidney that...

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Ectopic pregnancy: A pregnancy that is not in the uterus. The fertilized egg settles and g...

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Emergency department: The department of a hospital responsible for the provision of medica...

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Fatigue: A condition characterized by a lessened capacity for work and reduced efficiency ...

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Fever: Although a fever technically is any body temperature above the normal of 98.6 degr...

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Foreskin: The fold of skin which covers the head (the glans) of the penis. Also called th...

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Fungi: Plural of fungus.

Genital: Pertaining to the external and/or internal organs of reproduction.

Genital herpes: An infection by human herpes virus that is transmitted through intimate co...

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Gonorrhea: A bacterial infection that is transmitted by sexual contact. Gonorrhea is one o...

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Granuloma: A granuloma is one of a number of forms of localized nodular inflammation fou...

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Groin: The area where the thigh meets the hip.

HBV: Hepatitis B virus. A virus which primarily causes inflammation of the liver. The hepa...

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Headache: A pain in the head with the pain being above the eyes or the ears, behind the he...

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Hepatitis: Inflammation of the liver, irrespective of the cause. Hepatitis is caused by a ...

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Hepatitis A: Inflammation of the liver caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV). HAV is usua...

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Hepatitis B: Inflammation of the liver due to the hepatitis B virus (HBV), once thought t...

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Herpes: A family of viruses. Herpes also refers to infection with one of the human herpesv...

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HIV: Acronym for the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, the cause of AIDS (acquired immunodefi...

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HPV: Human papillomavirus.

Human papillomavirus: HPV. A family of over 100 viruses including those which cause warts ...

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Immune: Protected against infection, usually by the presence of antibodies.

Immune system: A complex system that is responsible for distinguishing a person from every...

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Immunodeficiency: The inability to form a normal immune response. Immunodeficiency can be ...

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Immunosuppression: Suppression of the immune system and its ability to fight infection. Im...

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Infection: The invasion and multiplication of microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, an...

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Infertility: Diminished or absent ability to conceive and bear offspring. A couple is cons...

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Inflammation: A localized reaction that produces redness, warmth, swelling, and pain as a ...

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Itching: An uncomfortable sensation in the skin that feels as if something is crawling on ...

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Jock itch: A common fungal infection sometimes referred to as ringworm, involving the skin...

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Lifetime risk: The risk of developing a disease during ones lifetime or dying of the disea...

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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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Lymphogranuloma venereum: Abbreviated LGV. An uncommon genital or anorectal (affecting the...

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Mental retardation: The condition of having an IQ measured as below 70 to 75 and significa...

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Mite: A tiny eight-legged creature belonging to the Order Acarina related to spiders and t...

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Molluscum contagiosum: A contagious disease of the skin marked by the occurrence of rounde...

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

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Neisseria: A group of bacteria that includes the bacterium that causes gonorrhea.

Night sweats: Severe hot flashes that occur at night and result in a drenching sweat. Nigh...

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

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Painful urination: See: Dysuria.

Pallidum: Part of what are called the basal ganglia of the brain which consist of the glob...

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Papules: Small solid rounded bumps rising from the skin that are each usually less than 1 ...

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Pathogenic: Capable of causing disease. For example, pathogenic E. coli are Eschericia col...

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Pediculosis: Infested with lice. See also: Head lice; Pubic lice.

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

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Penis: The external male sex organ. The penis contains two chambers, the corpora cavernosa...

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

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

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Prognosis: The forecast of the probable outcome or course of a disease; the patient's chan...

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Pubic lice: Parasitic insects found in the genital area of humans. Pubic lice are usually ...

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Pubis: The front center portion of the pelvis.

Pus: A thick, whitish-yellow fluid that results from the accumulation of white blood cells...

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Rash: Breaking out (eruption) of the skin. A rash can be caused by an underlying medical c...

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Rectum: The last 6 to 8 inches of the large intestine. The rectum stores solid waste until...

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Remission: Disappearance of the signs and symptoms of cancer or other disease. A remission...

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Scabies: Infestation of the skin by the human itch mite, Sarcaptes scabies. The initial ...

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Sensation: In medicine and physiology, sensation refers to the registration of an incoming...

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STD: Sexually transmitted disease.

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

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Syndrome: A combination of symptoms and signs that together represent a disease process.

Syphilis: A sexually transmitted disease caused by Treponema pallidum, a microscopic orga...

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Tenia: In medicine, tenia is a genus (group) of large tapeworms some of which are parasiti...

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Tired: A feeling of a lessened capacity for work and reduced efficiency of accomplishment,...

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Topical: Pertaining to a particular surface area. For example, a topical agent is applied ...

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Treponema pallidum: The cause of syphilis, a worm-like, spiral-shaped bacterium called a s...

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Trichomonas: A single-celled protozoan parasite best known in medicine because one species...

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Trichomonas vaginalis: A protozoan parasite that causes vaginitis. See: Trichomonas.

Trichomoniasis: Infection with trichomonas, in humans with Trichomonas vaginalis.

Ulcer: A lesion that is eroding away the skin or mucous membrane. Ulcers can have various ...

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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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Vaccines: Microbial preparations of killed or modified microorganisms that can stimulate a...

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Vagina: The muscular canal that extends from the cervix to the outside of the body. It is ...

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

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Venereal: Having to do with sexual contact. For example, a venereal disease is a sexually ...

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Virus: A microorganism that is smaller than a bacterium that cannot grow or reproduce apar...

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Viruses: Small living particles that can infect cells and change how the cells function. I...

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Yeast infection: Overgrowth of yeast can affect the skin (yeast rash), mouth (thrush), di...

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