Surrogacy Acronyms & Reproductive Terms


Commonly used surrogacy/fertility abbreviations found on online message groups.

2WW = 2 Week Wait
AF = Aunt Flo (menstrual period)
AI = Artificial Insemination
ART = Assisted Reproductive Technology
ASA = Anti-sperm Antibody
AH = Assisted Hatching
AHI = At-home Insemination
BA = Baby Aspirin
BBT = Basal Body Temperature
BCP = Birth Control Pills
BETA = Blood Testing for Pregnancy (measures hcg in blood)
BD = Baby Dancing (making love)
BFN = Big Fat Negative (negative pregnancy test)
BFP = Big Fat Positive (positive pregnancy test)
BW = Bloodwork
CB = Cycle Buddy
CD = Cycle Day – The first day of your period is cycle day 1
CF = Cervical Fluid
CM = Cervical Mucus
CNM = Certified Nurse Midwife
CP = Cervical Position
CVS = Chorionic Villus Sampling
D&C = Dilation & Curettage (abortion/termination procedure)
D&E = Dilation & Evacuation (abortion/termination procedure)
DE = Donor Egg
DH = Dear Husband
DPO = Days Post Ovulation
DPR = Days Post-Retrieval
DP3DT = Days Post 3-Day Transfer (age of embryo)
DP5DT = Days Post 5-Day Transfer (age of embryo)
DPT = Days Post Transfer
Dx = Diagnosis
E2 = Estradiol
ED = Egg Donor/Donation
EDD = Estimated Due Date
ET = Embryo Transfer
ELV = Easy Labour Vibes
FET = Frozen Embryo Transfer
FHR = Fetal Heart Rate
FIF = Former Intended Father
FIM = Former Intended Mother
FIP’s = Former Intended Parents
FSH = Follicle Stimulating Hormone

GC = Gestational Carrier
GD = Gestational Diabetes
GIFT = Gamete Intra-fallopian Transfer
GS = Gestational Surrogate
GTT = Glucose Tolerance Test
HCG = Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (pregnancy hormone)
HPT = Home Pregnancy Test
HSC = Hysteroscopy
HSG = Hysterosalpingogram
ICI = Intra-cervical Insemination
ICSI = Intra-cytoplasmic Sperm Injection
IF = Intended Father
IM = Intended Mother
IP = Intended Parent/Parents
INSEMS = Home or Artificial inseminations
IVF = In Vitro Fertilization
IUI = Intrauterine Insemination
LH = Luteinizing Hormone
LMP = Last Menstrual Period (start date)
LP = Luteal Phase
M/C = Miscarriage
MFI = Male Factor Infertility
O = Ovulation
OB = Obstetrician
OB/GYN = Obstetrician/Gynecologist
OHSS = Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome
OPK = Ovulation Predictor Kit
OPT = Ovulation Predictor Test
OTC = Over The Counter
P4 = Progesterone
PCOS = Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
PCOD = Polycystic Ovarian Disease
PG = Pregnant
PGD = Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis
PGS = Pre-implantation Genetic Screening
PIO = Progesterone in Oil
PIP = Potential Intended Parent
PIM = Potential Intended Father
PIF = Potential Intended Mother
PMS = Pre-menstrual Syndrome
RE = Reproductive Endocrinologist
Rx = Prescription
ER = Retrieval (Egg)
SA = Sperm/Semen Analysis
SM = Surrogate Mother
STD = Sexually Transmitted Disease
TS = Traditional Surrogate
TTC = Trying To Conceive

Reproductive Terms


Abandoned cycle An IVF cycle cancelled after drug administration has begun and before the egg retrieval.

Abortion A terminated pregnancy.

Adhesions Bands of fibrous scar tissue that may bind the pelvic organs or loops of bowel together.

Adrenal gland A pair of hormone producing glands located above the kidneys.

Agglutination Clumping sperm together due to infection, inflammation or antibodies.

AID Artificial Insemination by Donor.

AIDS Acquired immune-deficiency syndrome; a fatal disease caused by HIV that destroys the immune system’s ability to fight infection.

AIH Artificial Insemination by Husband.

Amenorrhoea Absence of menstrual cycles for six months or longer.

Amniocentesis A procedure which is usually carried out at around 15-16 weeks of pregnancy. It involves aspirating a small amount of the fluid which surround the baby in the womb. This fluid contains cells from the baby which can then be cultured and tested to determine the baby’s chromosome. The procedure is usually performed under ultrasound scan using a fine needle. The risk of causing miscarriage by this procedure is between 0.5 – 1%. The results often take two to three weeks.

Androgens Male sex hormones that are present in both men and women but in different quantities and producing different effects.

Andrologist A specialist in male infertility.

Anomaly Malformation or abnormality in any part of the baby.

Anovulation Absence of ovulation (failure to ovulate).

Antigen An antigen is any substance capable of eliciting immune response.

Antisperm antibodies Antibodies produced by the immune system against sperm. It adversely affects sperm function by inhibiting movement of sperm and fertilization. It can be present in males and females.

APGAR Score The APGAR score is a measurement of a newborn’s response to birth and life outside the womb. Ratings are based on the following factors: Appearance (color); Pulse, Grimace (reflex), Activity and Respiration. A high score is 10 and the low end is 1.

Artificial insemination Is placing sperm into the female reproductive tract.

Aspermia Absence of semen.

Assisted Hatching The mechanical, chemical or laser breaching of the gelatinous coating of the egg (zona pellucida).

Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART)  A medical procedure or treatment performed to help a woman achieve pregnancy. ART includes in vitro fertilization (ivf), egg or embryo donation, and surrogate birth.

Asthenozoospermia Low sperm motility.

Azoospermia The complete absence of sperm in the ejaculate.


Basal body temperature (BBT) chart Charting BBT is used to predict the time of ovulation.

Beta hCG test A blood test used to detect very early pregnancy and evaluate development.

Biochemical pregnancy When the patient’s pregnancy test is positive but no pregnancy is visible on ultrasound scan.

Blastocyst An advanced stage of embryo development, the embryo consists of an outer thin layer of cells, which later develops to placenta and an inner cell mass later develops to fetus.

Blastocyst transfer The transfer of one or more embryos at the blastocyst stage into the uterine cavity.

Blighted ovum (anembryonic pregnancy) Fertilized egg that failed to develop properly after implantation. Gestation sac develops in the absence of an embryo.


Caesarean Section Delivery Also known as a “c-section”; the delivery of a baby via an abdominal surgical incision.

Cervix Neck of womb. It acts as a reservoir for sperm and secretes an alkaline mucus which protect sperm from the acidity of the vagina.

Cervical mucus The secretion in the cervical canal. The amount and texture changes during the menstrual cycle.

Cervical smear (PAP smear) A screening test for cancer of the neck of the womb.

Chocolate (endometriosis) cyst A cyst inside the ovary filled with old blood. It occurs in endometriosis.

Chorionic villus sampling (CVS) A procedure which involve taking a biopsy from the placenta to test the fetus for genetic abnormalities. It is usually carried out under ultrasound scan at about eleven weeks of pregnancy. The placenta has the same genetic make-up as the baby. There is a 2-3% risk of the procedure causing a miscarriage.

Chromosomes Thread like structures that lie inside the nucleus of a cell. A human cell contains 23 pairs of chromosomes. Chromosomes are packed up with genes which carry all the information needed for the human body. The 23 pairs of chromosomes include a pair of sex chromosomes that determine the sex of the embryo. There are two types of sex chromosomes, X and Y – the Y is smaller than the X and contain all the essential genes for sex determination. The presence of a Y chromosome ensures a male (XY), its absence ensures a female (XX).

Cilia Hair-like projections from the cells lining the Fallopian tubes. They play a part in guiding the fertilized egg into the uterus.

Clinical pregnancy A pregnancy confirmed by increasing levels of hCG and the presence of a gestational sac detected by ultrasound scan or a fetus.

Clone A group of embryos or individuals that are genetically identical.

Conception The fertilization of a woman’s egg by a man’s sperm resulting in new life.

Congenital A defect existing since birth.

Cornua The horns of the uterus where the Fallopian tubes join the uterine cavity.

Cryopreservation The storage of the sperm, embryos or eggs by freezing at a low temperature (-196°C).

Cryptorchidism Failure of one or both testicles to descend into the scrotum.

Cyst Sac filled with fluid.


D & C Dilatation and Curettage. It is the dilatation of the cervical canal followed by the scrapping of the uterine lining.

Diagnostic Laparoscopy The insertion of a fibre optic telescope into the abdomen to look for abnormalities of the internal pelvic organs.

DIPI Direct intraperitoneal insemination. This is the injection of washed and prepared sperm into the peritoneal cavity under ultrasound guidance.

DNA A nucleic acid that carries the genetic information in the cell and is capable of self-replication and synthesis of RNA. DNA consists of two long chains of nucleotides twisted into a double helix and joined by hydrogen bonds.

Donor insemination The insemination of donor sperm into the vagina, the cervix, the womb, the tube or peritoneum.

DOT Direct Oocyte (egg) Transfer into the uterus.

Down Syndrome A genetic disorder caused by the presence of an extra chromosome 21.

Doxycycline  An antibiotic that is often used in treatment of reproductive tract infections. Often prescribed as a preventive measure.


Ectopic Pregnancy A pregnancy outside the uterine cavity.

Egg Collection The procedure by which eggs are collected from the woman’s ovaries.

Egg Donor A woman who donates her eggs.

Egg Recipient An intended parent who receives donated eggs.

Ejaculate (semen) The sperm and the seminal fluid that comes out of the urethra when a man has an orgasm.

Ejaculatory Ducts A pair of ducts; each formed by the joining of a seminal vesicle with a vas deferens.

Embryo A fertilized egg up to eight weeks of development.

Embryo Donor An individual or couple who donate their spare embryos to either infertile couples or for research purposes.

Embryo Recipient An intended parent who receives one or more donated embryos.

Embryo Transfer The transfer of one or more embryos into the uterine cavity.

Endometrial Biopsy  A procedure whereby a small sample of the uterine lining is removed and sent to pathology for evaluation.

Endometrium The lining of the womb, it undergoes cyclical changes during the menstrual cycle.

Endometriosis The presence of small implants of endometrial tissue outside the uterus in abnormal locations.

Epididymis Coiled tubing outside the testicles which store the sperm.

Estradiol The main female hormone.

Epididymitis Inflammation of the epididymis

Estrogens (Oestrogens) Female sex hormones, a group of hormones that are produced mainly by the ovaries. They are essential for normal sexual development (the breasts, vagina, womb, broad hips and rounded figure etc.) and for the reproductive system (make the cervical mucus amenable to the entry of sperm, prepare the endometrium and regulate the production of FSH and LH).

Estradiol (Oestradiol) The most potent naturally occurring estrogens in humans.


Fallopian tubes A pair of tubes between the uterus and ovaries, where the sperm and egg meet in natural conception.

Fertility When a couple has the ability to conceive and have children through natural sexual activity.

Fertility Care It is the care that a patient gets when he or she undergoes fertility treatments.

Fertility Clinics Medical clinics that assist couples who want to become parents but for medical reasons have been unable to achieve this goal via the natural course.

Fertility Treatment/Infertility Treatment The procedures that the couples undergo in order to treat their infertility are called fertility treatments. IVF, ICSI, IUI are some of the common fertility treatments that are performed while treating a patient with infertility.

Fertilization The penetration of an egg by sperm to initiate embryo development.

Fetus The term used for an embryo after the eighth week of development until birth.

Fibroids Benign tumor made of uterine muscle and connective tissue.

Fimbria The finger like ends of the Fallopian tubes that sweep over the surface of the ovary, and help to direct the egg into the tube.

Flow cytometry A method of sperm sorting used for sex selection. X and Y chromosome bearing sperm are stained with different flourescent dyes and then can be sorted by colour.

Follicle A fluid filled cyst in the ovary in which the egg develops.

Follicular phase The first half of the menstrual cycle before ovulation.

FSH Follicle stimulating hormone is secreted by the pituitary gland. It stimulates the growth of follicles in the female, and sperm production in the male.

Fundus The upper region of the uterus. The Fallopian tube open into the opposite corners of the fundus.


Gamete The male sperm or the female egg.

Gene The unit of inheritance. Everyone inherits two copies of each gene. One from the father, and one from the mother.

Genome The basic sets of genes in a chromosome.

Gestation This is the period of fetal development in the uterus from conception to birth, usually considered to be forty weeks in humans.

Gestational sac A fluid filled sac that develops within the cavity of the womb early in pregnancy.

GIFT Gamete Intra-Fallopian Transfer.

Gonads Sex organs, the ovaries in the females and the testes in the males.


Habitual abortion Repeat miscarriages.

Hepatitis B and C Viruses that may be transmitted sexually or by blood and can cause infection of the liver which can lead to jaundice or liver failure.

hCG Human Chorionic Gonadotropin hormone (hCG) is produced in early pregnancy to stimulate the corpus luteum to produce the hormone progesterone and estrogen, and is excreted in the urine (the substance detected in pregnancy tests). Also, hCG may be given by injection to induce ovulation and to support the luteal phase in females. It stimulates the production of the male hormone testosterone in males.

HIV The Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV) is a virus that causes Acquired Immuno Deficiency syndrome (AIDS).

hMG Human Menopausal Gonadotropin. It consists of FSH and LH.

Hormones Chemical substances (chemical messengers) secreted by endocrine glands, to regulate activities of certain cells and organs.

HRT Hormone Replacement Treatment.

Hydrosalpinx A blocked, dilated and fluid filled Fallopian tube.

Hypothalamus A small gland in the base of the brain and above the pituitary gland. It controls many body functions such as temperature and appetite, and regulates the secretion of hormones by the pituitary gland.

Hyperprolactinemia This is the name given to the excess production of the hormone prolactin in both males or females. It may cause ovulation and menstrual disorders in females and sexual dysfunction in males. There are many causes including hypothyroidism, side effects of certain drugs and pituitary tumor.

Hyperthyroidism Over production of the thyroid hormone by the thyroid gland.

Hypothyroidism Under production of the thyroid hormone by the thyroid gland.

Hysterectomy Surgical removal of the uterus.

Hysterosalpingogram (HSG) An X-ray of the uterus and womb in which a radio opaque dye is injected through the cervix into the uterus and tubes.

Hysteroscope A thin fibre optic telescope that is inserted through the cervix to inspect the inside of the uterus.


ICSI Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection is a variation of IVF treatment, where a single sperm is injected into the cytoplasm of an egg.

Implantation The attachment of the embryo to the uterine wall.

Impotence Inability of a man to have or maintain an erection.

Infertility Inability of a couple to achieve a pregnancy after one year of unprotected intercourse.

Intrauterine insemination Insemination of washed and prepared sperm into the uterus.

IUCD Intra Uterine Contraceptive Device.

IVF In Vitro Fertilization.


Karyotype A complete set of human chromosomes.


Laparoscope A fibre optic telescope that is inserted through the abdomen to examine the inside of the abdomen and pelvis.

Laparotomy A major abdominal surgery through a cut in the abdomen.

Leydig’s cells Cells within the testes that produce the hormone testosterone.

LH Luteinizing (luteinizing) hormone, a pituitary hormone that triggers ovulation and stimulates the corpus luteum to secrete progesterone. In males, LH stimulates the Leydig’s cells to produce testosterone.

LH surge The rapid rise of luteinizing hormone that usually occur in the middle of the cycle. It causes the follicle to release a mature egg.

Live birth rate per cycle The number of live births achieved from every 100-treatment cycle commenced.

Luteal phase The second half of the menstrual cycle after ovulation.

Luteal phase defect A condition in which the endometrium (lining of the womb) do not develop adequately for implantation, mainly because of inadequate progesterone levels or due to inability of the endometrium to respond to progesterone. In a small minority of women, the cause can be attributed to hyperprolactinemia or abnormal thyroid gland functions. It is characterized by a shorter than normal luteal phase or one with a progesterone deficit.


MAR Mixed Agglutination Reaction, a test to check for the presence or absence of antisperm antibodies.

Menarche A girls first menstrual cycle.

Menopause A condition when the ovaries ran out of eggs. It usually characterized by absence of periods, hot flushes, sweating and mood changes. The usual age for menopause is about 52 years.

Menstruation The monthly bleed which takes place if no pregnancy occurs.

Menstrual cycle A series of cyclical changes that occur in the female genital system each month.

MESA Micro Epididymal Sperm Aspiration. A procedure to aspirate sperm from the epididymis.

Miscarriage Loss of pregnancy from the womb before it is viable (capable of surviving independently outside the womb). Doctors usually use the term abortion instead of miscarriage. However, this is confusing to the layman who understands abortion as meaning the deliberate termination of pregnancy rather than accidental loss of a pregnancy.

Morula The fertilized egg after a few days of development when it forms a ball of cells.

Motility The percentages of all moving sperm in a semen sample.

Multiple birth Birth of more than one baby from a pregnancy.

Multiple birth rate The percentage of all births in which more than one baby was born.

Multiple pregnancy  A pregnancy in which two or more fetal hearts are present.

Myometrium The middle muscular layer of the womb.

Myomectomy Surgical removal of a fibroid.


Necrozoospermia All sperm in the ejaculate are dead.

Neonatal death The death of a baby within 28 completed days of delivery.


OATS Oligoasthenoteratozoospermia (OATS) means low sperm count, low sperm motility and a high proportion of abnormal sperm.

Oestrogens (Estrogens) Female sex hormones, a group of hormones that are produced mainly by the ovaries. They are essential for normal sexual development (the breasts, vagina, womb, broad hips and rounded figure etc.) and for the reproductive system (make the cervical mucus amenable to the entry of sperm, prepare the endometrium and regulate the production of FSH and LH).

Oestradiol (Estradiol) The most potent naturally occurring estrogens in humans.

OHSS Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. A possible side effect with some fertility drugs. It is characterized by swollen, painful ovaries and, in some cases, the accumulation of fluid in the abdomen and chest.

Oligomennorhoea Infrequent periods.

Oligozoospermia Low sperm count.

Oligoovulation Infrequent ovulation.

Oophorectomy The surgical removal of one or both ovaries.

Os External and internal openings at each end of the cervical canal.

Ovaries The two female sex glands which produce eggs and hormones.

Ovarian cyst A fluid-filled cavity inside the ovary.

Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS) A painful and potentially deadly side effect of fertility drugs, ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome (OHSS) is when the ovaries become overly swollen with fluid, leaking this excess fluid in to the body. In extreme cases, which are rare, the fluid may fill the chest area, leading to shortness of breath. Other symptoms of a serious case of OHSS include weight gain of more than 10 pounds in a few days, severe pain or swelling in the abdomen and trouble urinating.

Ovarian reserve The ability of the ovary to produce eggs .

Ovulation The release of a mature egg from its follicle.

Ovulatory cycle A series of cyclical changes that occur within the ovary each month and result in the release of an egg.

Ovulation induction The use of fertility drugs to stimulate ovulation if the woman is not producing eggs regularly. The aim is to restore physiological ovulation (single follicle). The aim of superovulation is to override physiology and stimulate multiple follicle development.

Ovulation Predictor Kit An over-the-counter pharmacy kit that tests the LH level in the urine to help detect the surge, or the commencement of ovulation.

Ovum (oocyte) An egg.


PCOS Polycystic ovarian syndrome, an abnormal condition in which the ovaries have many minute cysts and there is excess androgen (male hormone) production.

PCT Post-coital test, a microscopic examination of a women’s cervical mucus after intercourse to check the number and motility of sperm in the mucus.

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) Infection involving pelvic organs especially the tubes and ovaries. It may result in damage or blockage of the Fallopian tubes.

PESA Percutaneous Epididymal Sperm Aspiration, this involves retrieving sperm directly from the epididymis using a needle.

Pituitary gland A small gland located in the base of the brain and just beneath the hypothalamus, it secretes many hormones including FSH and LH.

PGD Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis, the techniques by which embryos fertilized in vitro is tested for specific genetic disorders such as cystic fibrosis and hemophilia before being transferred into the uterus.

PGS Preimplantation Genetic Screening is technique used to examine the embryo for aneuploidy (wrong number of chromosomes), and only transfer normal embryos.

Placenta The afterbirth organ to which the developing embryo and fetus is connected by the umbilical cord.

Polyp A small growth, usually benign protruding from the endometrium and dangle into the cavity of the womb. It may interfere with embryo implantation by acting like a coil. Polyps are usually removed surgically.

Pregnancy rate per cycle The number of pregnancies achieved from every 100-treatment cycle commenced.

Preterm delivery The delivery before completion of 37 weeks of pregnancy

Premature menopause A condition in which menopause occurs before the age of 40. It affects approximately 1% of women. In most cases there is no identifiable cause. The only effective treatment for infertility is IVF with donated eggs.

Progesterone A hormone secreted by the corpus luteum in the second half of the menstrual cycle to stimulate the endometrium and prepare it for implantation and maintains it should pregnancy occur, progesterone is produced in large quantities by the placenta.

Prostate gland A chestnut-sized gland in the male that lies below the bladder and encircles the urethra where the ejaculatory ducts, the two vas differences, and the urethra join, it contributes fluid to the ejaculate.

PZD Partial Zona Dissection, a micromanipulation procedure to help sperm penetrate the zona pellucida.

Prolactin A hormone secreted by the pituitary gland to stimulate milk production after childbirth.

Prostatitis Inflammation of the prostate gland usually as a result of infection.


Recto electro-ejaculation A technique used to obtain an ejaculate from spinal injured, or otherwise impotent men, where a special probe is inserted into the rectum to stimulate the seminal vesicles.

Reproductive endocrinologist An ob-gyn who specializes in reproductive endocrinology and infertility.

Reproductive surgeon An ob-gyn or urologist who specializes in the surgical correction of anatomical disorders that impair reproductive function.

Retrograde ejaculation The backward release of ejaculate into the bladder instead of the urethra at time of male orgasm.


Salpingectomy Surgical removal of the Fallopian tube.

Salpingitis Inflammation of the Fallopian tubes caused by infection.

Salpingolysis Removal of adhesions from around the tube which restricts its movements.

Salpingostomy An operation to open up a blocked Fallopian tube, where the blockage is at the fimbria end.

Scrotum Loose sack of skin containing the testes.

Semen analysis Laboratory examination of semen to check the quality and quantity of sperm.

Semen Also referred to as seminal fluid, this is comprised of the sperm and seminal secretions ejaculated during orgasm.

Selective fetal reduction The process in which one or more normal fetus in a multiple pregnancy are destroyed.

Seminiferous tubules The tiny tubules in the testicles in which sperm cells mature.

Seminal Vesicles Tow small oblong glands behind the bladder, each joins a vas deferens.

Seminal fluid (semen) The milky fluid that is ejaculated at orgasm. It contains fluid from the seminal vesicles, the prostate and the bulbourethral glands, in addition to sperm.

Seminal plasma Fluid in which the sperm is ejaculated.

Septum A wall that divides a cavity in half, such as the uterine septum.

Sertoli’s cells Cells in the testes that nurture immature sperm until they reach maturity and are released into the seminiferous tubules.

Sexually transmitted disease Also known as ‘Venereal disease’, is any disease transmitted by sexual intercourse such as gonorrhoea and chlamydia.

Spermatid An immature sperm cell.

Spermatogenesis The production of sperm.

Spermatozoa Sperm.

Sperm Buffer A process in which a fresh semen specimen is collected and placed in a cold-airtight container for shipping and immediate insemination use. The specimen can usually remain viable for up to thirty-six hours.

Sperm Count The number of sperm per milliliter of semen. A normal count is usually twenty million or more per milliliter. This is also known as “sperm density.”

Sperm Morphology The analysis of the form and structure of sperm.

Sperm Motility The analysis of the percentage of moving (mobile or motile) sperm in a semen sample. Normally fifty percent or more are moving rapidly.

Sperm Washing A technique that separates the sperm from the seminal fluid.

Sperm capacitation The chemical changes in the sperm that increase its ability to penetrate and fertilize an egg.

Sterilization A surgical procedure designed to produce infertility such as tubal ligation and vasectomy.

Stillbirth The birth of a dead infant.

Stimulated cycle A treatment cycle in which fertility drugs are used to produce more eggs than usual in the woman’s monthly cycle.

Subfertility Term used to describe any impairment of fertility without implying permanent infertility.

Superovulation The use of fertility drugs to promote the growth of multiple follicles.

Surgical sperm retrieval The retrieval of sperm from the epididymis or testis, this technique must be used in conjunction with ICSI, as the sperm retrieved by this technique are incapable of fertilization by themselves.

SUZI Subzonal insemination, where a single sperm is injected under the Zona of the egg.


TESE Testicular Sperm Extraction, involves retrieving sperm directly from the testis.

Testis (testicle) Male gonad which produces both sperm and male hormones.

TET Tubal Embryo Transfer

Thyroid gland A large gland in the neck. It lies in front and on either side of the windpipe, it secretes thyroxin hormone which regulates growth and metabolism.

Testosterone The principle and most potent male sex hormone. It is essential for normal sexual development (muscular body, broad shoulders, hair on the face, chest and limbs and deep voice etc.). It also plays a key role in the maturation of sperm within the testes.

Torsion Twisting of an ovary or testicle and commonly results in obstruction of the blood supply of the organ. Urgent surgical correction may be needed.

Tuboplasty Surgical repair of damaged Fallopian tube.

Twins (Fraternal) Fraternal (dizygotic) twins are the result when two different eggs (ova) are fertilized by two different sperm.

Twins (Identical) Identical (monozygotic) twins are formed when a single egg (ovum), fertilized by a single sperm, divides (often after implantation in the uterus).


Ultrasound scans A technique used for visualizing internal organs, assessing their sizes and shapes by using high-frequency sound waves.

Undescended testis Also known as cryptoorchidism. A term used to describe testis, which, at birth has not descended into the scrotum as normal. It occurs in 1% of male infants, usually one testis fails to descend. Such cases are usually associated with a variable degree of impaired sperm production. Undescended testes may be surgically corrected but the chance of restoring normal fertility is low.

Urethra The muscular tube leading from the bladder to the end of the penis and carries urine and semen.

Urologist A physician who specializes in the surgical treatment of disorders of the uniary tract and male reproductive tract

Uterus An organ of the female for containing and nourishing the fetus prior to birth. The uterus consists of the cervix, uterine body and fundus. There a mouth of the uterus that leads to the uterine cavity. The both of fallopian tubes run into the uterus.

Uterine septum A band of tissue in the midsection of the uterus that divide the normal uterine cavity.


Vagina The female organ of sexual intercourse; the birth canal.

Vaginitis Inflammation of the vagina.

Vaginismus Vaginal spasm, inability to relax vaginal muscles before or during intercourse.

Varicocele An abnormality where varicose veins (dilated veins) lie above one or both testicles; they are present in about 15% of men in the general population, and up to 40% of men attending infertility clinics. It usually causes no discomfort, but can cause infertility in some men. This may be due to an abnormally high temperature within the testicles.

Vas deferens (sperm duct) The muscular tube that carries the sperm from the epididymis to the urethra (pleural is vasa defrentia).

Vasectomy The operation to sterilize a man, in which the vasa deferentia are cut and tied back. It is usually performed under a local anesthetic.

Vasogram An X-ray of the vas deferens.

Viscosity Thickening of the semen.


Washing the sperm A procedure to remove the seminal fluid from the sperm.

Yellow body (corpus luteum) A temporary endocrine structure developing from an ovarian follicle and getting yellow after ovulation. Hence the name – yellow body.


ZIFT Zygote Intra-Fallopian Transfer.

Zona pellucida The protective coating surrounding the egg.

Zygote A fertilized egg before cell division begins.