Glossary

Glossary

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A

Ampulla

Fimbrian funnel. Aperture of the oviduct taking in the egg cell. There fertilization takes place.

Androgens

Male sex hormones, especially Testosterone. For women formation in the adrenal cortex and in the ovary as estradiol pre-stage. Increased formation in case of PCO-syndrome (see above).

Azoospermia

No sperm cells in the ejaculate.

B

Blastocyst

Embryo five days after fertilization.

C

Corpus luteum

Yellow body. Forms sex hormones, especially Progesterone in order to maintain and support early pregnancy.

Cryoconservation

Deep-freeze conservation of sperm cells, testicle tissue, egg cells, pre-nucleus stages, embryos.

D

Deutsches IVF Register

See GIR

E

Early abortion

Early miscarriage. Chromosomal defects of the embryo result in a missing development, missing implantation or a miscarriage before the 12th week of pregnancy. About 25-30% or more (depending on the age of the woman) of the earliest and early pregnancies result in miscarriages and fetal death.

Eight-cell group

Embryo three days after fertilization.

Endocrine sterility

Sterility due to hormonal disorder.

Endometriosis

Tissue similar to endometrium outside the uterus, may cause pain, adhesion, sterility and other problems due to damages to the oviduct.

Estradiol

Controls the production of GnRH and Gonadotropins, causes various changes to the female sex hormones, inter alia growth of the endometrium.

EU/EUG

Ectopic pregnancy. Pregnancy outside the uterus, not necessarily in the oviduct.

F

Farbdoppler

Ultraschallverfahren zur Durchblutungsmessung nach dem physikalischen Doppler-Prinzip. Lässt Aussagen über zu erwartende Eizellqualität und Gebärmutterschleimhautqualität zu. Schlechte Durchblutung der Gebärmutterschleimhaut ist durch Behandlung mit Sildenafil (Viagra) zu verbessern.

Fertilizing

Fertilization.

Follicle

Ovarian follicle in which there is a microscopically small egg cell and matures under the influence of hormones. The coating cells of the follicle produce the sex hormone estradiol.

Follicle puncture

Aspiration of follicle liquid with egg cells using ultrasound.

Four-cell group

Embryo two days after fertilization.

FSH

Follicle-stimulating hormone, causes the growth of follicles in the ovary, production of estrogen and maturation of egg cell. An elevated level at women may indicate to her being in the menopausal years. An elevated level at wen indicates to a defect of sperm production.

G

GIR

German IVF Register. All stimulation cycles for IVF are registered prospectively as from the 7th day of stimulation. All cases which are not registered by the 7th day of stimulation do not count for the evaluation. Subsequent registrations or changes are not possible or are recorded comprehensively, so that data manipulation in the DIR is almost impossible.

Globozoospermia

The sperm are missing the acrosome. Such sperm cannot be received by the egg cells. This defect can be resolved by means of ICSI.

GnRH

Gonadotropine-releasing hormone. Causes the release and production of hormones in the hypophysis.

GnRH-Analoga

Medicine causing release of the existing hormones in the hypophysis but does not hinder the production of new hormones (e.g. Profact, Decapeptyl, Synarella, Suprecur, Enantone, etc.).

GnRH-Antagonist

Medicine hindering the effect of GnRH in the hypophysis (e.g. Cetrotide).

Gonadotropin

Medicine produced from human urine or by genetic engineering stimulating the maturation of several egg cells in the oviduct (in the natural cycle generally only one egg cell matures). Same effect as FSH (and LH).

Gonadotropin compounds

Pregnancy. The blastocyst hatches and implants in the uterus.

Gravidity

Pregnancy. The blastocyst hatches and implants in the uterus.

H

HCG

Human Choriongonadotropin = pregnancy hormone. Has a similar effect like LH, is therefore used as a medicine to induce ovulation. Is further used as a pharmaceutical in the luteal phase = 2. Second half of the cycle to support the function of the yellow bodies. May under certain conditions result in a hyper-stimulation syndrome.

Hormones

Active substance produced naturally in the body or by genetic engineering. They are generally transported via the blood circuit from the place where they are produced to the place where they are needed and trigger certain biochemical reactions.

Hypophysis

Pituitary gland. Produces hormones which, in turn, control the function of other hormonopoietic organs, e.g. Gonadotropin for controlling the functions of the ovary or, for example, hormones for controlling the functions of the thyroid gland.

Hypothalamus

Region on the diencephalon producing GnRH.

I

ICSI

Intracytoplasmic sperm injection, injection of a sperm cell into an egg cell.

ICSI study

Multicenter prospective voluntary notification of a central register for ICSI studies about ICSI pregnancies. About 60 IVF centers have participated for more than two years with relevant numbers. Restructuring was finished in August 2000. Results have been available since November 2001. ISCI study show a slightly higher risk for malformation due to the procedure, which, however, seems to be dependent on the couple rather than on the applied method.

Idiopathic sterility

Sterility with no measurable reason in the standard testing. Defects of the function of sperm and/or egg cells possible as well as genetic defects. Nowadays the most common form of fertility disorder besides male sterility.

Immunological sterility

Sterility due to the body’s own antibodies against the embryo.

Implantation

Implantation of the embryo.

Insemination

1. Injection of sperm cell into the uterus.2. Insertion of sperm cells into the egg cells in a culture medium for IVF.3. Micro-injection of a sperm cell into an egg cell (see ICSI).

IVF

In-vitro fertilization = fertilization “in a glass” = outside the human body.

J

K

L

LH

Luteinizing = yellow body inducing hormone, causes ovulation, production of the corpora lutea (yellow bodies) and thus production of Progesterone in the ovary.

M

Male sterility

Sterility due to missing sperm cells (closure of the seminal ducts or missing production of sperm cells) or due to too little sperm cells or sperm cells moving too little or sperm cells limited in their functionality.

MESA

Micro-surgical epididymal sperm aspiration; the extraction of sperm from the epididymis Nowadays TESE is favored because of better fertilization rates.

Morula

Embryo four days after fertilization.

N

O

OAT syndrome

Oligo (little) – Astheno (little movable) – Terato (dyplastic) – Zoospermia (sperm cells in ejaculate).

Ovary

Place where the egg cell matures and the female sex hormones Estradiol and Progesterone are produced.

Over-stimulation syndrome

Formation of cysts in both ovaries after stimulation and formation of clearly more than 10 follicles and possibly extreme fluid accumulation in the abdominal cavity and between the lungs and pleura. Also vomiting possible. Also a risk of thrombosis due to loss of fluid and too little drinking.

Ovulation

Disruption of the mature follicle through the influence of Gonadotropin LH or similar hormonal influence (cf. ß-HCG above) and release of the egg cell. The coating cells will become corpora lutea.

Ovum

Egg cell. Consists of the cellular covering = Zona pellucida and egg cell and first polar body.

P

PCO syndrome

Syndrome of polycystic ovaries = small cystic changes of the ovaries, increased level of masculinizing sex hormones = Androgens, tendency to acne, pattern of male hair growth, possibly overweight, infrequent period. Risk of multiples during the fertility treatment and risk of hyper stimulation (see respective paragraph).

Polarization microscopy

Spindle View or OCTAX ICSI Guard are procedures to llocalize the spindle apparatus of the egg cell. The spindle contains the chromosomes in their correct order and plays an important part in the finalization of the second meiotic divisions after the fertilization of the egg cell. With Spindle View it can ensured that the injection in an ICSI treatment takes place at a sufficient distance of the chromosomes, with ICSI Guard it is to be ensured that only mature egg cells are used for the ISCI. Both procedures contribute to a better fertilization rate in the ICSI.

Pre-conception diagnostics

Genetic test of the polar bodies of the egg cell before the fusion of the nuclei allows an analysis about chromosomal or genetic changes of the egg cell.

Pre-implantation genetic diagnostics

Genetic tests of the embryo by extracting one or less frequently two cells (blastomere) and subsequent analyses with respect to chromosomal or genetic changes.

Pre-nucleus stadium

Egg cell at about 16-20 hours after fertilization (invasion/injection of the sperm cells). In ideal cases every third pre-nucleus stadium develops to reach the blastocyst phase.

Pre-treatment

GnRH-analogon stop the body’s own Gonadotropin activity.

Progesterone

Luteohormone, prepares the uterus for the implantation of the embryo and supports the early stage of pregnancy.

Q

R

Risks

Multiple pregnancy. Hyper-stimulation syndrome.

S

Sperm

Sperm cell, consisting of spermatozoa with acrosome, middle piece and cauda. The acrosome is important for accommodation in the egg cell. The acrosome contains the chromosomes = genetic material. In the middle piece there is a structure (centrosome) which is responsible for the fertilized egg cell being able to divide itself. If this centrosome in the middle piece is missing at a certain number of sperm cells, which cannot be shown in a usual spermiogramm using light microscopy, the concerned man is absolutely and untreatably infertile. The cauda is responsible for the movability.

Sperm antibodies

Antibodies = defense mechanism against sperm cells at the man or the woman.

Spermiogramm

Sperm cell tests.

Sterility

Infertility.

Stimulation

Treatment with Gonadotropins. The aim is to have several potential egg cells matured.

T

TESE

Testicular sperm extraction, obtaining sperm from testicle tissue.

Testis

Testicles. Place where sperm cells and ale sex hormones are produced.

Testosterone

Male sex hormone.

Trigger injection

HCG (see above). Has the same effect like LH, initiates the maturation of the egg cell to an egg cell capable of being fertilized. 40-48 hours later ovulation would occur. Therefore collection of egg cells for IVF 36 hours after HCG.

Trophoblast

Part of the placenta, produces pregnancy hormone. That is how the embryo supports its own further development.

Tubae uterinae

Oviduct. The fertilized egg cell divides itself during its 4-5 days journey through one of the oviducts to the uterus until a blastocyst.

Tubal pregnancy

Implantation of the embryo in the oviduct. May in rare cases (when not recognized) lead to life-threatening complications (disruption of the oviduct, risk of bleeding to death). In rare cases there is the combination of tubal pregnancy and a pregnancy in the uterus in IVF!

Tubal sterility

Infertility due to closure of oviduct or a malfunction of the oviduct due to salpingitis or endometriosis.

U

uFSH/ rFSH

Gonadotropin (e.g. Fostimon, Bravelle / Gonal F, Puregon) produced from human urine or by genetic engineering.

uHMG

Menopausal Gonadotrophin produced from human urine, contains FSH and LH (e.g. Menogon HP).

V

Vitrification

 (Speed freezing) of egg cells in a pre-nucleus stadium and of untreated egg cells (so-called “Social Freezing”).

W

X

Y

Z