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Planned Parenthood Action Glossary

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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

A

Ableism
Discrimination and prejudice against people living with mental, physical, cognitive, or intellectual disabilities. Ableism can include negative actions, beliefs, and judgements against a person with a disability in social and professional settings. Ableism can also include creating structures and institutions that favor able-bodied people.
Abortifacient
A drug, herb, or device that can cause an abortion (end a pregnancy).
Abortion
Ending a pregnancy.
Abortion funds
Groups and organizations that help people pay for an abortion they couldn't otherwise afford. Abortion funds may also offer help with transportation, lodging, childcare, and other resources people need to get a safe, legal abortion.
Abortion pill
Describes the process of medication abortion, which includes the use of two medications, mifepristone and misoprostol, to safely end a pregnancy.
Abstinence
Not having sex with anyone. You can be abstinent if you’ve had sex before, are in a relationship, or have never had sex.
Abstinence-only programs
A form of “sex education” that teaches abstinence (not having sex) as the only morally correct option for unmarried people. They don’t include information about protection from STDs or pregnancy. See "abstinence-only-until-marriage programs."
Acquaintance rape
Sexual assault by someone the victim knows.
Acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)
The most advanced stage of HIV.
Affordable Care Act (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act)
Law signed by President Barack Obama in 2010 that set in motion sweeping changes to the U.S. health care system, including the requirement that most private health insurance plans cover people with pre-existing conditions, preventive care including birth control with no out of pocket costs, and a requirement that young people can stay on their parent or guardian’s insurance until they are 26 years old. The law is frequently called ACA, for short, or Obamacare.
Age of consent
The age at which state law considers a person old enough to decide to have sex with someone.
AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome)
The most advanced stage of HIV.
Ally
Someone who’s on the same side as you. Often used to describe someone who takes a stand against oppression or discrimination who is not a member of the oppressed group — for example, a white person who speaks out against racism or a straight person who speaks out against homophobia.
Anti-choice
Opposed to the belief that people have the right to make their own choices about whether and when to have a child.
Aspiration abortion
A procedure that ends pregnancy by emptying the uterus with the gentle suction of a manual syringe or with machine-operated suction. Also called “in-clinic abortion.”

B

Barrier methods of birth control
Birth control that blocks sperm from passing through the cervix (the barrier between the vagina and uterus). These include the condom, female condom, diaphragm, cervical cap, spermicide, and sponge.
Bi erasure / invisibility
The tendency to ignore the existence or legitimacy of bisexuality.
Biphobia
Fear, hatred, or mistrust of bisexuals.
Birth center
A special health facility for people giving birth and their families.
Birth control
Any behavior, device, medicine, or procedure used to prevent pregnancy. Also known as contraception.
Bisexual
Being sexually attracted to both men and women. Sometimes used to describe people who are sexually attracted to people of all genders, including non-binary genders.
Body autonomy
Your ability to decide what happens to your body without outside influence or control. This can include being able to make decisions about your physical self and deciding what “healthy” looks like for you, free of influence from stereotypes, opinions, or rules of others.
Body diversity
The range of ways bodies can look, inclusive of size and ability.

C

Censorship
When something is forbidden because it’s thought to be offensive or dangerous.
Chestfeeding
Another way to describe feeding a baby with human milk from the chest. Many nonbinary and transgender people use this term to describe the process of feeding their baby.
Child pornography
Images of people under the age of 18 designed to be sexually arousing. Making, distributing, or consuming child pornography are serious crimes and are harmful, traumatizing, and can create life-long damage to children.
Closet
“Being in the closet,” or “being closeted,” means not sharing or not being able to share your LGBTQ+ identity with yourself or others.
Coercion
Forcing someone to do something they don’t want to do, often with threats or emotional manipulation.
Coming out
The process of accepting and being open about one’s identity, such as being lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning. Short for “coming out of the closet.”
Complete miscarriage
A miscarriage (when a pregnancy ends on its own) in which all the pregnancy tissue is passed without medical treatment.
Comprehensive sex education
Programs that include information and skill-building around sexuality, birth control, STD prevention, abstinence, healthy relationships and consent, sexual orientation/gender identity, etc. Comprehensive sex education is sex-positive, inclusive, medically accurate, trauma-informed, evidence-informed, and developmentally appropriate.
Comstock Act
An 1873 law that made it a federal crime to use the U.S. mail to distribute anything considered “obscene, lewd, lascivious, indecently filthy, or vile,” including information about abortion, contraception, and sexual health. Many state “Comstock laws” were also passed around the turn of the 20th century.
Conception
The beginning of pregnancy. The moment when the pre-embryo attaches to the lining of the uterus and pregnancy begins.
Condom
Thin, stretchy pouches worn on the penis during sex. Mostly made from latex or plastics (like polyurethane and polyisoprene). Sometimes made from lambskin. Condoms are an over-the-counter barrier method of birth control that also provide protection from STDs with one exception — lambskin condoms don’t protect against STDs.
Consent
Consent is an agreement to participate in a sexual activity (including kissing, oral sex, genital touching, vaginal or anal penetration, and anything else). Before being sexual with someone, you need to know if they want to be sexual with you, too. Both people must agree — every single time — for it to be consensual. Without consent, any sexual activity is sexual assault or rape.
Contraception/contraceptive
Any behavior, device, medication, or procedure used to prevent pregnancy. Also known as birth control.
Copay
A set amount of money agreed upon by a patient and an insurance company that the patient must pay out of pocket for medical services and prescriptions.
Cyberstalking
To track and follow someone’s online presence and communications in a threatening way.

D

D & c (dilation and curettage)
The use of a curette — a metal medical instrument with a narrow loop — to gently scrape away the uterine lining, and the use of suction to remove tissue from the uterus. Can be used for abortion care or for treatment of a miscarriage.
D & e (dilation and evacuation)
The use of suction and medical tools to remove tissue from the uterus during an abortion.
Date rape
Forced sexual contact from someone you know or are dating. Also sometimes called “acquaintance rape.”
Deductible
A set amount of money that a person with insurance is required to pay for health care before their health insurance will start covering any costs.
Dilation and curettage (d & c)
The use of a curette — a metal medical instrument with a narrow loop — to gently scrape away the uterine lining, and the use of suction to remove tissue from the uterus. Can be used for abortion care or for treatment of a miscarriage.
Dilation and evacuation (d & e)
The use of medical instruments and suction to gently remove tissue from the uterus during an abortion.
Doe v. Bolton
The U.S. Supreme Court decision, issued on the same day as Roe v. Wade, that struck down restrictions on facilities that can be used for abortion services, which allowed them to be performed in clinics as well as hospitals.
Domestic partnership
A committed, long-term relationship of two unmarried people who live together.
Double standard
Unequal expectations, moral standards, or rules that allow one group to have more privileges than another group within a society. A sexual double standard, for example, usually places more restrictions on women than on men.
Doula
A person who gives emotional support during pregnancy, labor, and childbirth and for some time after.

E

Ectopic pregnancy
A life-threatening pregnancy that develops outside the uterus, often in a fallopian tube. See “tubal pregnancy.”
Egg
The reproductive cell stored in the ovaries and released during ovulation. Pregnancy happens when sperm enters an egg, grows into a ball of cells, and implants into the uterus.
Eisenstadt v. Baird
The 1972 U.S. Supreme Court decision that made it legal for unmarried people to use birth control.
Embryo
The organism that develops from a pre-embryo during the second month of pregnancy. This stage of the pregnancy lasts about 5 weeks. Embryos then develop into fetuses.
Emergency contraception
A safe and effective way to prevent pregnancy up to 5 days after unprotected penis-in-vagina sex. Emergency contraception pills made from hormones and certain IUDs are types of emergency contraception.
Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)
A proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution which has never been adopted. It was originally pushed forward by the National Women’s Party in 1923, which would have guaranteed that “equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.” The ERA’s long history ended in 1979 when it failed to be ratified by three-quarters of the states.
Equality
When all people have the same rights, regardless of their situation. This may mean that some people can more easily access rights than others based on their identity, income, or geography.
Equity
When people and communities have access to the resources and opportunities they need in the way they need them. This means taking into account unfair challenges that may prevent them from accessing those resources.
ERA (equal rights amendment)
A proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution which has never been adopted. It was originally pushed forward by the National Women’s Party in 1923, which would have guaranteed that “equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.” The ERA’s long history ended in 1979 when it failed to be ratified by three-quarters of the states.
Escort
Someone who takes someone somewhere. At reproductive health centers, escorts are volunteers who help people get safely inside during anti-choice demonstrations. Escort can also sometimes mean sex worker.
Ethnicity
Belonging to a group that shares a common culture, religion, or language.
Eugenics
A racist, classist, and ableist movement to control who should and shouldn’t have children.

F

Family planning
Making plans and taking actions, like using birth control, to have the number of children you want, when you want them.
Federal abortion ban
The federal law passed in 2003 and upheld in 2007 that bans certain kinds of abortion procedures as early as 12 to 15 weeks in pregnancy. The federal ban includes no exception for the patient’s health and forces doctors to stop using procedures they believe are safest and best for their patients.
Female circumcision
The practice of removing part or all of the clitoral hood, clitoris, or vulva as part of a cultural or religious ritual. In some cases, the vulva is sewn together to preserve virginity. See “female genital mutilation.”
Female genital mutilation (fgm)
The practice of removing part or all of the clitoral hood, clitoris, or vulva as part of a cultural or religious ritual. In some cases, the vulva is sewn together to preserve virginity. See “female circumcision.”
Feminism
The belief that people of all genders should have equitable economic, political, sexual, and social rights.
Fertilization
The joining of an egg and sperm.
Fetus
Develops from the embryo at 10 weeks of pregnancy and receives nourishment through the placenta.
Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH)
Made by the pituitary gland, this hormone stimulates the growth of an egg/the development of sperm.

G

Gaslighting
A form of emotional abuse in which a person tries to confuse someone into not believing their own memories, thoughts, or feelings.
Gay
When someone is only attracted to people of the same gender.
Gay bashing
Physical or verbal violence against people who are perceived to be lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender.
Gay liberation movement
The national call to establish civil rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender women and men from the late 1960s to the mid 1980s.
Gender
A social and legal status of male or female. A set of expectations from society about behaviors and characteristics. Each culture has standards about the way that people should behave based on whether they’re male or female.
Gender assignment
The medical and legal description of one’s sex, determined at birth.
Gender binary
The idea that there are only 2 categories of gender (male and female) that are mutually exclusive and different from each other.
Gender expression
How a person chooses to show their gender on the outside using clothes, hairstyles, or other markers. A person’s gender expression doesn’t have to match their gender identity. For example, a person who likes to wear masculine clothes may still identify as a woman.
Gender identity
A person’s inner feelings about themselves. Gender identity is how someone views their own gender and what they call themselves. Someone’s gender identity doesn’t have to match their sex assigned at birth. Some examples of gender identity include identifying as a man, woman, or gender non-binary.
Gender nonconforming
When a person’s gender expression doesn’t fit inside traditional male or female categories (sometimes called the gender binary).
Gender norms
Social standards on appropriate feminine and masculine behavior.
Gestational age
The length of a pregnancy. Measured from the first day of the last menstrual period.
Gynophobia
Fear of women.

H

Health care provider
A licensed doctor, nurse, nurse practitioner, nurse-midwife, or physician assistant.
Health coverage (health insurance)
A plan or program that covers some or all medical expenses for each member. The plan or program could be provided by an employer, government-sponsored, or purchased by an individual.
Health insurance
A plan or program that helps pay for the medical expenses of their members, like medicine, doctor visits, and surgery.
Heteronormativity
The cultural assumption that everyone is straight (heterosexual) until they tell you otherwise.
Heterosexual
Being attracted to people of the other gender.
High-risk pregnancy
A pregnancy that is more likely to have complications for the pregnant person or their fetus.
Homophobia
Fear or hatred of people who are gay, lesbian, or bisexual.
Homosexual
Being attracted to people of the same gender.
Hormonal contraceptives
Birth control methods that use hormones to prevent pregnancy. These include the implant, the hormonal IUD, the pill, the patch, the ring, and the shot.
Hormone therapy
1. A combination of hormones (like estrogen or testosterone) or hormone-blockers used in transgender care to help patients have secondary sex characteristics in line with their gender identity. 2. In menopause and postmenopause, estrogen and sometimes progestin can relieve symptoms such as hot flashes and vaginal dryness.
Hyde Amendment
A law that was passed in 1976, first sponsored by Rep. Henry Hyde (R-IL), that forbids the use of federal funds to pay for abortion services.

I

In-clinic abortion
A procedure done in a health center, doctor’s office, or hospital that ends a pregnancy.
In-network
Describes a health care provider (like a doctor or nurse) or service (like an x-ray) that’s covered by your insurance plan so people insured under the plan pay a discounted rate.
Incest
Sexual activity between members of the same family.
Inclusive language
Planned Parenthood works to provide sexual health information and services to all people regardless of how they identify.

Gender inclusive language is written in a way that includes everyone, regardless of sex, gender, or gender identity.
Individual racism
When a person has racist beliefs and attitudes. Individual racism can happen at both a conscious and unconscious level, and can be both active and passive. Examples include telling a racist joke, thinking a racial stereotype, or believing that white people are better than non-white people.
Institutional racism
Discrimination against people of color that exists within education, health care, criminal justice, businesses, and other public and private institutions.
Intimate partner violence (IPV)
A pattern of emotional, verbal, physical, or sexual abuse in the context of an intimate relationship. Also called "domestic violence," "partner abuse," "relationship abuse," and "dating violence."
Intrauterine device (IUD)
A tiny device that’s placed in the uterus to prevent pregnancy. It’s safe, long-term, reversible, and one of the most effective birth control methods available. One IUD, the Paragard, use copper to prevent pregnancy. Others use hormones to prevent pregnancy.
IPV (intimate partner violence)
A pattern of emotional, verbal, physical, or sexual abuse in the context of an intimate relationship. Also called "domestic violence," "partner abuse," "relationship abuse," and "dating violence."
IUD (intrauterine device)
A tiny device that’s placed in the uterus to prevent pregnancy. It’s safe, long-term, reversible, and one of the most effective birth control methods available. One IUD, the Paragard, use copper to prevent pregnancy. Others use hormones to prevent pregnancy.

L

Legal Disclaimer
Note: Planned Parenthood is not responsible for or endorse any legal, medical, or other advice or information provided by any of the entities identified or referenced herein or by any other third parties, whether referenced herein or not.
Lesbian
A woman who’s sexually or romantically attracted to other women.
LGBTQ+
Stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (or alternatively, “queer"). The + includes other identities such as asexual, intersex, nonbinary, and more.

M

Mammary glands
Mammary glands are located inside your breast, and make breast milk if you’ve recently given birth. All people have mammary glands, but not everyone who has mammary glands makes breast milk.
Mammogram
Breast cancer screening that takes X-rays of the breasts to detect cancer before they can be felt.
Margaret Sanger (1883-1966)
Founder of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. She established the first birth control clinic in the U.S. in 1916. In 1948, she helped found the International Planned Parenthood Federation.
Maternal mortality
Death during or shortly after pregnancy.
Medication abortion / medical abortion
The use of a combination of drugs to end a pregnancy. Also called the “abortion pill.”
Method effectiveness
How well a particular type of birth control prevents pregnancy.
Mifepristone
One of two drugs (the other is misoprostol) used for a medication abortion. Commonly known as “the abortion pill.” The brand name in the U.S is Mifeprex.
Misogynoir
A term, coined by queer Black feminist Moya Bailey, to specify a type of misogyny directed toward and experienced by Black women (and femmes), where both race and gender influence bias.
Misogyny
Dislike, contempt for, or hatred of women.
Misoprostol
A medication that can be used to complete a medication abortion that’s been induced with mifepristone. This process is commonly known as the abortion pill. Although less effective than mifepristone, misoprostol is used alone for abortion in some countries.
Morning-after pill
Emergency contraception that can be used within 120 hours (5 days) of unprotected vaginal sex to decrease the chance of pregnancy.

N

Nonbinary
When a person’s gender identity doesn’t fit inside traditional male or female categories (sometimes called the gender binary).
Nurse practitioner
A registered nurse who has been trained to provide primary health care, including many services also performed by doctors.

O

Obamacare
A nickname for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, a law signed by President Barack Obama in 2010 that set in motion sweeping changes to the U.S. health care system, including the requirement that private health insurance companies cover people with pre-existing conditions, copay-free preventive care including birth control, and a requirement that young people can stay on their parent or guardian’s insurance until they’re 26 years old. The law is frequently called ACA, for short.
Oocyte
A not fully developed egg cell.
Open enrollment
A period of time each year when people can enroll in certain health care plans. Each year, consumers can select plans offered by their employer or buy insurance on the health insurance marketplaces (either the federal marketplace, Healthcare.gov, or the state-based marketplaces).
Oral contraceptive
Another name for the birth control pill.
Out-of-network
Describes a health care provider (like a doctor or nurse) or service that’s not covered by your insurance plan. You may still be able to visit the provider or access the services, but it will cost more than an in-network provider.
Over-the-counter
Available without a prescription from a nurse or doctor.

P

Pap smear
A term commonly used to describe a Pap test, which looks for abnormal, precancerous, or cancerous growths on the cervix.
Pap test
A test to look for abnormal, precancerous, or cancerous growths on the cervix. Sometimes called a Pap smear.
Parental consent
A requirement that 1 or both parents give permission for a minor (someone under the age of 18) to do something. Many states have mandatory parental consent laws regarding abortion services for minors. Most states don’t require parental consent for services like birth control or STD testing.
Pill, the
Short for the birth control pill.
Plan B
A brand of emergency contraception pill made from levonorgestrel, the same kind of hormone found in birth control pills. Available over the counter to anyone of any age or gender in the US.
Pregnancy
When someone is carrying a developing fetus in their uterus. It begins with the implantation of the pre-embryo and progresses through the embryonic and fetal stages until birth, unless it’s ended by miscarriage or abortion. It lasts about 40 weeks from implantation to birth.
Premium (health insurance premium)
The amount of money an individual pays each month for health insurance.
Pro-choice
Supporting the right to a safe, legal abortion.

Q

Queer
A word that can refer to a variety of sexual identities and gender identities that are anything other than straight and cisgender. In the past queer was used as a slur, and may still be offensive to some. However, many people use the word with pride to identify themselves.
Questioning
Being unsure about your sexual orientation or gender identity.
Quickening
The moment during pregnancy when a pregnant person first notices the fetus moving in their uterus.

R

Race
A group of people descended from common ancestors with a shared culture, religion, or language. Races have been created and labeled by people, rather than being biological. Race is used to create advantage and disadvantage across different groups of people.
Rape
Sexual intercourse without consent.
Right-to-life
An expression that people who oppose safe and legal abortion use to describe their position.
Roe v. Wade
The 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide.
RU-486
The laboratory research code number that was used during clinical trials for a medication to cause abortion. (Outdated and inaccurate. Correct term is mifepristone.)

S

Safer sex
Ways in which people reduce the risk of getting sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. A more precise term than “safe sex,” because no sex act is completely safe from the possibility of passing a sexually transmitted infection.
Sex
A label assigned at birth of female, male, or sometimes intersex. Also, the act of vaginal, anal, or manual (using hands) intercourse, or oral-genital stimulation, with a partner.
Sex assignment
The designation of biological sex — female, male, or intersex — usually made by a doctor at the birth of a child. The sex that appears on a person’s birth certificate.
Sex education
Programs that include information and skill-building around sexuality, birth control, STD prevention, abstinence, healthy relationships and consent, sexual orientation/gender identity, etc. Comprehensive sex education is sex-positive, inclusive, medically accurate, trauma-informed, evidence-informed, and developmentally appropriate.
Sex positive
Embracing sex, sexuality, and sexual expression as a natural, positive part of life that can be defined, embodied, and explored without shame or judgement
Sex selection
The attempt to control the sex of your future children.
Sex worker
A person who’s paid for providing sex or sexually arousing activities, including phone or camera sex, erotic massage, lap dancing, or striptease.
Sex-negative
Believing that sex and sexuality are bad or dangerous.
Sexism
Systemic and individual discrimination against women.
Sexual abuse
Sexual activity that’s harmful, exploitative, or not consensual.
Sexual assault
The use of force or coercion, physical or psychological, to make a person engage in sexual activity.
Sexual harassment
Unwanted sexual advances from someone. Includes suggestive gestures, language, or touching.
Sexual health
Enjoying emotional, physical, and social well-being in regard to one’s sexuality, including free and responsible sexual expression that enriches one’s life. (Sexual health is not only the absence of sexual dysfunction or disease.)
Sexual identity
Your understanding of your own sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, and sexual expression/preferences.
Sexual minority
An individual or group whose gender identity, sexual behavior, sexual orientation, or sexual preference is thought to be outside socially accepted norms. Generally any group/identity that is outside of heterosexual, cisgender, or monogamous.
Sexual norms
Social standards based on a society’s attitudes, customs, and expectations regarding sex and sexuality. In other words, things that are considered sexually “normal.”
Sexual orientation
Identities that describe what gender(s) a person is romantically and/or sexually attracted to. There are many sexual orientations. Some common sexual orientations include gay, lesbian, straight, and bisexual.
Sexual preference
People, activities, or other things that you like, sexually.
Sexual revolution
Used to describe 2 different historic shifts in the sexual attitudes and norms of people in the U.S. The first American sexual revolution occurred in the aftermath of World War I — “the roaring '20s.” It was characterized by younger women — “flappers” — openly insisting on the right to have sex before marriage. The second American sexual revolution occurred during the 1960s and '70s. It was accompanied by the women’s & gay liberation movements, which were entwined with the civil rights movement.
Sexually transmitted disease (STD)
Infections that are passed from one person to another during vaginal, anal, or oral sex, or sexual skin-to-skin contact. More accurately called sexually transmitted infection.
Sexually transmitted infection (STI)
Infections that are passed from one person to another during vaginal, anal, or oral sex, or sexual skin-to-skin contact. Commonly known as sexually transmitted disease.
Slut
An insulting term for a woman who has “too many” sex partners, though different people have different ideas about what is considered too many. Some people have reclaimed the term “slut” and use it to describe themselves as people who are proud of their sexual freedom.
Spontaneous abortion
Miscarriage, pregnancy loss.
Stalking
Following or tracking someone in person or online without their consent.
Statutory rape
Legally, sexual contact between an adult and anyone who is below the age of consent, whether or not the contact is voluntary.
Stereotype
A widely accepted judgment or bias regarding a person or group.
Sterility
Infertility — the inability to become pregnant or to cause a pregnancy.
Stigma
Severe disapproval/judgment for a behavior that’s reinforced by society/culture.
Structural racism
When a society normalizes white leadership, dominance, and privilege to uphold white supremacy, while devaluing and othering people of color.
Systemic racism
Racism against people of color that is built into education, health care, criminal justice, and other institutions. Racist policies and practices create advantages for white people and oppression and disadvantages for people who are classified as non-white. Policies and practices don’t have to directly mention race in order for them to treat people differently based on race.

T

Taboo
A behavior that’s outside the cultural norms. Something society or culture says you shouldn’t do or talk about.
Therapeutic abortion
Ending a pregnancy because of a fetal abnormality or to protect the pregnant person’s physical or mental health or life.
Trans
Short for transgender. A general term used to describe someone whose gender expression/gender identity are different than the sex they were assigned at birth. Some people put an asterisk on the end of trans* to expand the word to include all people with non-conforming gender identities and expressions.
Transgender
A general term used to describe someone whose gender expression/gender identity are different than the sex they were assigned at birth.
Transphobia
Fear and hatred of people who are, or are perceived to be, trans-identified or gender non-conforming.
Two-spirit
An umbrella term for gender identities common in American Indian/First Nations/Native American cultures. Refers to people who have both masculine and feminine parts of their identity, and are treated as a third gender within those cultures.

U

Ultrasound
A medical test that creates an image of internal organs by bouncing sound waves off the internal organs. Frequently used to find or monitor a pregnancy, but has a variety of medical uses.

V

Vacuum aspiration abortion
A surgical procedure in which a pregnancy is removed from the uterus with a gentle suction device.
Vaginal dilators
Smooth tube-shaped devices, usually made of plastic, that come in a range of sizes. Dilators are used to treat some symptoms of menopause, certain types of sexual dysfunction, or other medical conditions. During dilator therapy, you put a dilator in your vagina to help stretch and shape your vaginal canal. Vaginal dilators can also help your vagina maintain shape and function during cancer treatments, or after certain medical procedures like gender-affirming surgery.
Viability
The ability of a fetus to survive outside the uterus.

W

WIC (Women, Infants, and Children)
A federal nutrition program for women, infants, and children (WIC) that provides food, health care, and nutrition education to low-income families.

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