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Sexual Conditions Health Center

Sex Glossary

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Orgasm: Sexual climax.

Oocytes (ova or egg cells): The female cells of reproduction.

Ovarian Cancer: An abnormal growth of tissue (tumor) that develops in a woman's ovaries.

Ovarian Cyst: A sac filled with fluid or a semisolid material that forms on or within one of the ovaries, the small organs in the pelvis that make female hormones and hold egg cells.

Ovary: A small organ in the pelvis that makes female hormones and holds egg cells which, when fertilized, can develop into a baby. There are two ovaries: one located on the left side of the uterus (the hollow, pear-shaped organ where a baby grows) and one on the right.

Paget's disease of the vulva: A condition in which cancerous cells are present in the skin of the vulva.

Pap smear: A screening test in which a sample of cells is taken from a woman's cervix. The test is used to detect changes in the cells of the cervix.

Paraphilias: Impulse disorders (mental illnesses) that are characterized by recurrent and intense sexual fantasies, urges, and behaviors. Paraphilias are considered deviant -- outside of acceptable patterns of behavior -- because they involve unusual objects, activities, or situations not considered sexually arousing to others.

Paraphimosis: A condition in which the foreskin of the penis, once retracted, cannot return to its original location.

Penile cancer: Cancer of the penis.

Partial vulvectomy: A procedure that removes a portion of the vulva.

Pedophilia: A disorder in which a person has fantasies, urges, or behaviors that involve sexual activity with a pre-pubescent child or children (generally age 13 years or younger).

Pelvic cavity: The space inside the pelvis that holds the reproductive organs.

Pelvic exam: An examination during which a doctor inserts a speculum (an instrument that lets the clinician see inside the vagina) and examines the vagina, cervix, and uterus. The doctor will feel for any lumps or changes. A Pap smear is usually done during a pelvic exam.

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID): An infection of the female reproductive organs usually contracted through sexual contact.

Pelvic ultrasound: A test that uses sound waves to produce an electronic image of the organs of the pelvis, especially the ovaries.

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