OBGYN Glossary

The following are a list of terms that may be used during the course of your OB/GYN care.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

M

Macrosomia
When a mother’s blood sugar level is too high, it can result in too much sugar going to the fetus, causing macrosomia, meaning the fetus has grown too large. It can make delivery very difficult.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
MRI is a type of imaging that produces a two-dimensional view of internals organs and structures, usually used to view the brain or spinal cord. It can also detect spreading cancer by showing abnormal nodules in bones and lymph nodes.

Malignant
When tissue or tumor is malignant, it is cancerous and likely to get worse and spread to other parts of the body.

Mammogram
See Mammography.

Mammography
X-rays of the breast are used to detect cancer using this procedure.

Masturbation
This refers to self-stimulation of the genitals, often to orgasm.

Meconium
The greenish substance that grows in the bowels of a fetus, meconium is usually discharged following birth.

Menarche
The first menstrual period of a young woman is called menarche.

Menopause
Usually occurring between the ages of 45 and 55, menopause is the natural and permanent cessation of menstruation and the stopping of ovarian function, along with the reduction of the production of estrogen and progesterone.

Menorrhagia
Menorrhagia is sometimes called dysfunctional uterine bleeding, and is the most common type of abnormal uterine bleeding. Characterized by heavy and prolonged bleeding, it can be so severe as to render daily activity impossible.

Menses
Menses is the term for the menstrual flow.

Menstruation
When an egg is not fertilized, blood and uterine tissue is discharged. It is a cyclical process beginning with the shedding of the uterine lining, which is purged along with discharge from the cervix and vagina, from the vaginal opening.

Metastasis (LH)
The spreading of cancer throughout the body is referred to as metastasis.

Metastasize
When a disease metastasizes, it is spread throughout the body.

Metronidazole
Trichomoniasis and vaginosis are two of the conditions treated by this antibiotic.

Metrorrhagia
Any bleeding from the uterus between menstrual periods is referred to as metrorrhagia.

Mini-Pill
Containing only one hormone, the mini-pill is a birth control pill safe for use during breastfeeding.

Miscarriage
The spontaneous loss of a pregnancy before term is called a miscarriage.

Molar Pregnancy
Sometimes, abnormal placental tissue will grow in the uterus. This is referred to as a molar pregnancy or gestational trophoblastic disease (GTD).

Monoclonal Antibodies
These antibodies find and bind to cancer cells within the body.

Mucus Plug
A pink-tinged, jelly-like substance that is released just before labor, the mucus plug is made up of secretions in the cervix.

Multiple Pregnancy
When there is more than one fetus in the womb, this is a multiple pregnancy.

Myomectomy
When a myomectomy is performed, the uterus is left in place during the removal of fibroids.

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