Glossary

  • Cardiovascular: This term refers to the heart (cardio) and the blood vessels (vascular).  The cardiovascular system includes arteries, veins, arterioles, venules, and capillaries.
  • Conjugated estrogens: These estrogens are a blend of estrogens that can be chemically produced or derived from plant or animal sources.
  • Estrogen:  Is one of the two dominant hormones secreted naturally by women’s bodies, the other being progestin.  The two, together, regulate the reproductive system and affect menstruation, pregnancy and menopause.
  • Endometriosis: Endometriosis is a common health problem in women. It gets its name from the word endometrium, the tissue that lines the uterus (womb). In women with this problem, tissue that looks and acts like the lining of the uterus grows outside of the uterus in other areas. These areas can be called growths, tumors, implants, lesions, or nodules. This condition can go undetected or can cause pain, infertility and other health problems. (Source: womenshealth.gov – The Federal Government Source for Women’s Health Information (United States) http://www.4woman.gov/faq/endomet.htm#a)
  • Pelvic floor: The pelvic floor is made up of a group of muscles, ligaments and tissues that support the main organs of the lower abdomen (bladder, uterus, intestine) and control urine.
  • Perimenopause:  Women experience perimenopause in the time before they have reached menopause.  This time frame, anywhere between two and ten years, is characterized by some of the physical and emotional changes associated with diminishing hormones.  In perimenopause, women still menstruate, but their cycle can vary and their menstrual periods may be heavier, or even more scant.  During this time, women may begin to have some hot flashes and their sleep may be disrupted.  Officially, the perimenopause phase includes the first year after menopause when menstruation has stopped.
  • Pessary: A pessary is a small plastic or silicone medical device or form of pharmaceutical preparation which is inserted into the vagina or rectum and held in place by the muscles in the pelvic floor.  The weight and positioning of this device can assist with urinary incontinence.
  • Premature menopause: While this is no firmly established age, women who stop menstruating before the age of 40 are usually viewed as having premature menopause.  This can occur naturally or can be the result of an immune disorder, surgery, irradiation or medication.
  • Progestin: Is one of the two dominant hormones secreted naturally by women’s bodies, the other being estrogen.  The two, together, regulate the reproductive system and affect menstruation, pregnancy and menopause.
  • Post-menopause: This is the period after the final menstrual period, whether menopause was natural or due to surgery.
  • Vaginal cone: A vaginal cone is a medical device specifically designed and shaped to exercise pelvic floor muscles in order to strengthen them and restore proper bladder functions in women with urinary stress incontinence.
  • Vasomotor:  Menopause symptoms, mainly hot flashes and night sweats, are referred to as vasomotor symptoms.
  • Urogenital:  Urogenital symptoms are those that affect the function and health of the bladder and vagina. Urogenital atrophy is the term used to describe any deterioration of the tissues, muscles, structure and functions of the vagina and/or urinary tract.
SOGC