Glossary of Terms

ART (assisted reproductive technology): A phrase to describe any treatments that involve handling human eggs or embryos.

CASA (computer- assisted semen analysis): A laboratory technique to precisely measure and study sperm motion when male infertility is suspected.

CCCT (clomiphene citrate challenge test): A blood test to measure FSH (see below) taken on days 3 and 10 of the menstrual cycle. Clomiphene citrate (marketed under name brands such as Clomid, Serophene) is taken on days 5 through 9 to induce ovulation.

EEJ (electroejaculation): A procedure that involves electrically stimulating tissue near a man’s prostate to cause ejaculation.

FSH (follicle stimulating hormone): A hormone produced by the pituitary gland (and sometimes given by injection). FSH stimulates the growth of th efollicle surrounding an egg.

GnRH (gonadotropin releasing hormone): A hormone secreted by the hypothalamus (an area of the brain that controls reproduction and other actions) that prompts the pituitary gland to release FSH and LH (see below) into the bloodstream.

hCG (human chromatic gonadotropin): A hormone produced by the placenta that is measured in common pregnancy tests. It may also be injected to stimulate ovulation and maturation of eggs.

HSG (hysterosalpingogram): An X-ray procedure to determine whether the falopian tubes are open and to check for abnormalities in the uterus.

ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection): A procedure in which a single sperm is injected directly into an egg to help spur fertilization, used primarily in cases of male infertility.

IUI (intrauterine insemination): A form of artificial insemination in which sperm that has been washed free of seminal fluid to increase the chance of fertilization in inserted directly into the uterus.

IVF (in vitro fertilization): A procedure in which an egg and sperm are combined in the laboratory to facilitate fertilization. Resulting embryos are transfered to a woman’s uterus.

LH (luteinizing hormone): Produced by the pituitary gland, this hormone normally causes a woman to ovulate and her eggs to mature.

MESA (microepididymal sperm aspiration): A procedure for collecting sperm from men whose reproductive ducts are blocked, usually as a result of a vasectomy or absence of vas deferens (the tubes that carry sperm to the urethra).

OHSS (ovarian hyper-stimulation syndrome): A potentially life-threatening conditon characterized by enlargement of the ovaries, fluid retention and weight gain may occur when the ovaries are overstimulated during assisted reproduction.

PESA (percutaneous epididymal sperm aspiration): A procedure in which a needle is inserted into the gland that carries sperm from the testicle to the vas deferens in order to extract sperm for an IVF procedure.

PGD (preimplantation genetic diagnosis): A test in which one or two cells are removed from an embryo and screened for genetic abnormalities.

TESE (testicular sperm extraction): Surgery to remove testicular tissue and collect living sperm for use in an IVF or ICSI procedure.

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