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September 2015

FAQ011, September 2015

Sterilization is a permanent method of birth control. Sterilization procedures for women are called tubal occlusion. The procedure for men is called vasectomy.

September 2015

FAQ077, September 2015

What is pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)? Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is an infection of the female reproductive organs. It is a common illness. PID is diagnosed in more than 1 million women each year in the United States.

FAQ042, August 2015

What happens during puberty? When puberty starts, your brain sends signals to certain parts of the body to start growing and changing. These signals are called hormones. Hormones make your body change and start looking more like an adult’s (see FAQ041 “Your Changing Body—Especially for Teens”). Hormones also can cause emotional changes.

PFS005, August 2015

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is the virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). HIV can enter the bloodstream through contact with an infected person’s body fluids, such as blood or semen. This can happen during sex or by sharing needles used to inject drugs. An infected woman who is pregnant can pass the virus to her baby. Women with HIV who breastfeed also can pass the virus to their babies. Once in the blood, HIV attacks the immune system. As the immune system weakens, the body becomes less able to resist disease and other infections. AIDS is diagnosed when a perso...

August 2015

FAQ068, August 2015

What is at-risk drinking? At-risk drinking means drinking more than seven drinks a week or three drinks on a single day. At-risk drinking also includes binge drinking.

August 2015

FAQ090, August 2015

What is early pregnancy loss? The loss of a pregnancy during the first 13 weeks of pregnancy (the first trimester) is called early pregnancy loss, miscarriage, or spontaneous abortion.

July 2015

FAQ061, July 2015

What is laparoscopy? Laparoscopy is a type of surgery. In “open” surgery, an incision is made in the skin. This means making an incision that can be several inches long in the abdomen. Laparoscopy is a way of doing surgery using small incisions (usually no more than 1/2 inch long). Laparoscopic surgery sometimes is called “minimally invasive surgery.”

July 2015

FAQ188, July 2015

How does multiple pregnancy occur? A twin, triplet, or higher-order pregnancy (four or more babies) is called multiple pregnancy. If more than one egg is released during the menstrual cycle and each is fertilized by a sperm, more than one embryo may implant and grow in your uterus. This type of pregnancy results in fraternal twins (or more). When a single fertilized egg splits, it results in multiple identical embryos. This type of pregnancy results in identical twins (or more). Identical twins are less common than fraternal twins.

June 2015

FAQ131, June 2015

What are some of the benefits of exercise for postpartum women? Exercise has the following benefits for postpartum women: It helps strengthen and tone abdominal muscles. It boosts energy. It may be useful in preventing postpartum depression. It promotes better sleep. It relieves stress.

FAQ156, June 2015

How does pregnancy begin? Fertilization, the union of an egg and a sperm into a single cell, is the first step in a complex series of events that leads to pregnancy. Fertilization takes place in the fallopian tube. Over the next few days, the single cell divides into multiple cells. At the same time, the small cluster of dividing cells moves through the fallopian tube to the lining of the uterus. There it implants and starts to grow. From implantation until the end of the eighth week of pregnancy, the baby is called an embryo. From the ninth week of pregnancy until birth, it is called a fe...

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
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