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SW 647R Human Sexuality and Social Work Practice

Acquaintance rape (date rape)

forced sexual assault by a friend, acquaintance or date

Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)

a catastrophic illness in which a virus invades and destroys the ability of the immune system to fight disease. The AIDS virus appears to be spread primarily through sexual contact, needle sharing among injection drug users, or less commonly, through administration of contaminated blood products.


the placenta and amniotic sac following their expulsion through the vagina after childbirth


the inability to put one's feelings or emotions into words


the absence of menstruation


a procedure in which amniotic fluid is removed from the uterus and tested to determine if certain fetal birth defects exist

Amniotic fluid

the fluid inside the amniotic sac surrounding the fetus during pregnancy


oral stimulation of the anus


substances that are known to inhibit sexual behavior ---- such as tranquilizers, opiates, antihypertensives, and nicotine


the primary hormone products of the testes, most importantly testosterone, which influences both the development of male physical sexual characteristics and sexual motivation


possessing behavioral characteristics of both sexes; also used to describe gender role flexibility


a substance that allegedly arouses sexual desire and increases the capacity for sexual activity


the darkened circular area surrounding the nipple of the breast

Artificial insemination

a procedure in which semen from a woman's partner is mechanically introduced by a health care practitioner into the woman's vagina, cervix, or uterus

Atypical sexual behavior

term the authors use to describe sexual behavior that is not typically expressed by the majority of people in American society; clinical term is paraphilia

Autoerotic asphyxia

the enhancement of sexual excitement and orgasm by pressure-induced oxygen deprivation

Bartholin's glands

two small glands located on each side of the vaginal opening that secrete a few drops of fluid during sexual arousal

Basal body-temperature method (BBT)

a method of birth control based on temperature changes before and after ovulation


attraction to both same-sex and other-sex partners


deriving sexual pleasure from being bound, tied up or otherwise restricted


secondary sex characteristics, composed of fatty tissue and mammary glands

Bridge maneuver

a technique used to help women experience orgasm during intercourse

Calendar method

a method of birth control based on abstinence from intercourse during the estimated calendar time of her menstrual cycle when she is ovulating and fertile


an inflammatory infection of the vaginal tissues caused by the yeast-like fungus Candida albicans


surgical removal of the testes or ovaries.


the state of being unmarried (as historically defined); currently defined as not engaging in sexual behavior

Cervical cap

a plastic or rubber thimble-shaped cup that covers the cervix in order to provide a contraceptive barrier to sperm


the small end of the uterus, located at the back of the vagina

Cesarean section

a childbirth procedure in which the infant is removed through an incision in the abdomen and uterus


a raised, red painless sore that is symptomatic of the primary phase of syphilis


a disease characterized by smaller bumps in the genital region that eventually rupture and form painful ulcers with a discharge

Child sexual abuse

sexual contact of any kind between an adult and a child (inappropriate touching, oral-genital stimulation, coitus, etc.)

Chlamydia infection

caused by the bacterial microorganism Chlamydia trachomatis, it is among the most prevalent and most damaging of all stds, and is the most common bacterial STD in the U.S.


surgical removal of the foreskin of the penis


physiological changes that occur during the transition period from fertility to infertility in both sexes

Clitoral glans

the head of the clitoris, richly endowed with nerve endings

Clitoral shaft

the length of the clitoris between the glans and the body


a highly sensitive structure of the female external genitals, the only purpose of which is sexual pleasure


penile-vaginal intercourse


a thin, yellowish fluid secreted by the breasts during late pregnancy and the first few days following delivery

Coming out

acknowledging, accepting and openly expressing one's homosexuality; there are several steps involved in this process


a latex or membrane sheath that fits over the penis and is used for protection against unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases

Constant-dose combination pill

the most commonly used oral contraceptive in the U.S.; contains synthetic estrogen and progestin which are released at constant levels throughout the menstrual cycle


the rim of the glans of the penis

Cowper's glands

(bulbourethral glands) two pea-sized glands located alongside the base of the urethra in the male that secrete an alkaline fluid during sexual arousal

Cremastic reflex

involuntary contractions of the major scrotal (cremasteric) muscle, causing the scrotum to draw closer to the body


a condition in which the testicles fail to descend from the abdominal cavity to the scrotal sac


oral stimulation of the vulva


a well-known antiandrogen; an injectable contraceptive that contains progestin and is effective for twelve weeks


an inherited disease that occurs when the pancreas fails to secrete insulin. Nerve damage or circulatory problems resulting from diabetes can cause sexual problems


a contraceptive device consisting of a latex dome on a flexible spring rim. The diaphragm is inserted into the vagina with contraceptive cream or jelly and covers the cervix.

Dilation and evacuation

a medical procedure for pregnancy termination between 13 and 21 weeks


rinsing out the vagina with plain water or solutions; usually unnecessary. Excessive douching may result in vaginal irritation.


pain or discomfort that occurs before or during menstruation


pain or discomfort during intercourse


flattening and thinning of the cervix that occurs before and during childbirth


the process whereby semen is expelled through the penis to the outside of the body

Elective abortion

a decision to terminate a pregnancy by medical procedures Endometriosis ---- a condition in which tissue that normally grows on the walls of the uterus implants on various parts of the abdominal cavity


the tissue that lines the inside of the uterine walls


neurotransmitters chemically similar to morphine that produce feelings of tranquillity and security


the structure along the back of each testicle in which sperm maturation occurs


an incision that is sometimes made in the perineum to prevent the ragged tearing of tissues that may occur during the birth process


coordinated by the autonomic nervous system, the process whereby the three erectile chambers of the penis engorge with blood causing it to increase in size


ovarian hormones, the most important of which is estradiol, which influence the development of female sex characteristics and help regulate the menstrual cycle


the act of exposing one's genitals to an unwilling observer

Extramarital relationship

sexual interaction experienced by a married person with someone other than her or his spouse

Fallopian tubes

two four-inch tubes that extend from the uterus in the pelvic cavity where the egg and sperm travel


oral stimulation of the penis and scrotum

Female orgasm disorder (anorgasmia)

a sexual difficulty involving the absence of orgasm in women

Female sexual arousal disorder

a woman's persistent inability to attain or maintain the vaginal lubrication-swelling response

Female sterilization

the leading method of birth control in the U.S. whereby the fallopian tubes are tied off or clipped by any one of the following methods: minilaparotomy; laparoscopy; or culpotomy


obtaining sexual excitement primarily or exclusively from an inanimate object or a particular part of the body

First-stage labor

the initial stage of childbirth in which regular contractions begin and the cervix dilates

Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH)

a pituitary hormone secreted by a female during the secretory phase of the menstrual cycle that stimulates the development of ovarian follicles


usually defined as the touching, kissing, or oral-genital contact that precedes coitus


a covering of skin over the penile glans


a highly sensitive, thin strip of skin that connects the glans to the shaft on the underside of the penis


an imprecise and pejorative term traditionally used to describe a variety of female sexual problems


a fairly common paraphilia in which a person obtains sexual pleasure by pressing or rubbing against another in a crowded public place


the psychosocial aspects of being masculine or feminine

Gender dysphoria

another term for transsexualism, the condition in which an individual's gender identity is opposite to his or her biological sex

Gender identity

how one psychologically perceives oneself as being either male or female

Gender role (sex role)

a collection of attitudes and behaviors that are considered normal and appropriate in a specific culture for people of a particular sex

Genital warts

viral warts that appear on the genitals and are usually transmitted through vaginal, oral or oral-genital sexual interaction


men who provide sexual services for women in exchange for money and gifts


the smooth, acorn-shaped head of the penis


the reproductive organs (testes in men and ovaries in women)


a sexually transmitted disease that initially causes inflammation of mucous membranes

Grafenberg spot

the system of glands and ducts surrounding the urethra which can be located by stimulating the anterior wall of the vagina below the urethra


the medical specialty for female sexual and reproductive anatomy


a disease, characterized by blisters on the skin in the regions of the genitals or mouth, that is caused by a virus and is easily transmitted by sexual contact


irrational fears of homosexuality in others or within oneself, or self-loathing because of one's homosexuality


an individual whose primary erotic, psychological, emotional and social interest is in a member of the same sex, even though those interests may not be overtly expressed

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)

the use of supplemental hormones during and after menopause

Hot flashes

a common symptom associated with menopause whereby the fluctuating levels of hormones rapidly dilate the blood vessels, causing a woman to feel a momentary rush of heat

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)

an immune-system-destroying virus that causes AIDS


a fold of tissue partially covering the vaginal opening

Hypoactive sexual desire (HSD)

a sexual difficulty involving lack of interest in sexual fantasy and activity


a brain structure that plays a major role in controlling the production of sex hormones and the regulation of fertility and menstrual cycles through its interaction with the pituitary gland


the surgical removal of the uterus


the inappropriate and pejorative term often applied to male erection difficulty; literally means "without power"

In vitro fertilization (IVF)

a procedure in which the eggs are removed from the ovary and are fertilized in a laboratory dish by her partner's sperm, and later introduced into the woman's uterus.


sexual contact between two people who are related, one of whom is often a child

Intrauterine devices

a small, plastic device that is inserted into the uterus for contraception


the opening of the vagina, located between the urinary opening and the anus


entry of the penis into the vagina

Kaplan's model of sexual response

three stages of sexual response that include desire, excitement, and orgasm

Kegel exercises

a series of exercises developed by Arnold Kegel that strengthen the muscles underlying the external male or female genitals

Kinsey's continuum of sexual orientation

Alfred Kinsey's seven-point scale analyzing sexual orientation, ranging from 0 (exclusive heterosexual contact) to 6 (exclusive homosexual contact)

Klinefelter's Syndrome

a chromosomal abnormality that results when an atypical ovum is fertilized by a Y-bearing sperm, creating an XXY individual

Labia majora

the outer lips that extend downward from the mons on each side of the vulva; they surround the labia minora and urethral and vaginal openings

Labia minora

the inner lips, located within the labia majora, that consist of hairless folds of skin that join at the clitoral hood


a method of childbirth preparation using breathing and relaxation


a common term for homosexual women

Luteinizing hormone (LH)

the hormone secreted by the pituitary gland that stimulates ovulation in the female

Male erectile disorder

a sexual difficulty whereby a man's penis does not become erect in response to sexual stimulation

Male orgasmic disorder

the inability of a man to ejaculate during sexual activity, usually intercourse

Mammary glands

milk glands in the female breast


a highly sensitive x-ray test for the detection of breast cancer Masters and Johnson's sexual response cycle ---- four phases in sexual response for men and women that include excitement, plateau, orgasm, and resolution

Masturbation (autoeroticism)

self-stimulation of one's genitals for sexual pleasure

Medical abortions

when medications are used to induce abortions in early pregnancy


the initial onset of the first menstrual period


cessation of menstruation due to the aging process or surgical removal of the ovaries

Menstrual phase

the phase of the menstrual cycle when menstruation occurs

Menstrual synchrony

the development of congruent menstrual cycle timing that sometimes occurs among women who live in close proximity


the sloughing off of the built-up uterine lining that takes place if conception has not occurred


marriage between one man and one woman

Mons veneris

literally "mound of Venus"; refers to the pads of fatty tissue covering the pubic bone

Mucus method

a birth control method that is based on determining the time of ovulation by means of the cyclical changes of the cervical mucus

Multiphasic pill

an oral contraceptive designed to reduce total hormone dosage and side effects by providing fluctuations of estrogen and progesterone levels throughout the menstrual cycle

Multiple orgasm

more than one orgasm experienced within a short time period


increased muscle tension that occurs throughout the body in response to sexual arousal


a rare sexual paraphilia in which a person obtains sexual gratification by viewing or having intercourse with a corpse


the central pigmented area of the breast, which contains numerous nerve endings. In women, the nipple also contains the milk ducts

Nocturnal emissions

involuntary ejaculation during sleep, also known as a "wet dream"

Nocturnal orgasm

orgasm that occurs during sleep; it is experienced by both men and women

Normative male alexithymia

a relatively common condition among men in which they are unaware of their feelings and/or unable to express them


a contraceptive method in which six thin capsules of synthetic progestin are implanted in a woman's upper arm; provides effective contraception for five years


the surgical removal of the ovaries


the surgical procedure for removing the testes

Orgasmic platform

the increased engorgement of the outer third of the vagina during the plateau phase of the sexual response cycle

Orgasmic reconditioning

a behavior therapy technique in which a client is instructed to switch from paraphilic to healthy fantasies at the moment of masturbatory orgasm


the opening in the cervix that leads to the interior of the uterus


female gonads that produce ova and sex hormones


the release of a mature ovum from the graafian follicle of the ovary

Pap smear

a screening test for cervical cancer


term used to describe uncommon types of sexual expression in the psychological and psychiatric literature

Pedophilia (child molestation)

nonrelative child sexual abuse

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)

invasive infections of the upper reproductive tract (uterus, pelvic cavity, etc.)

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