Contraceptive, minipill: A form of oral contraceptive taken daily, like combined oral contraceptives (the “pill”), but containing only the hormone progestin and no estrogen.
The minipill works by reducing and thickening cervical mucus to prevent sperm from reaching the egg. It also keeps the uterine lining from thickening, which prevents a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus.
The minipill is slightly less effective in preventing conception than the pill.
The minipill can decrease menstrual bleeding and cramps as well as diminish the risks of endometrial and ovarian cancer and pelvic inflammatory disease. Because the minipill contains no estrogen, it does not present the risk of blood clots associated with estrogen in combined pills.
The minipill is a useful option for women who cannot take estrogen because they are breast-feeding or because estrogen-containing products cause them to have severe headaches or high blood pressure.
The side effects of the minipill include menstrual cycle changes, weight gain, and breast tenderness.
- Contraction, uterine
Contraction, uterine: The tightening and shortening of the uterine muscles. During labor, contractions cause the cervix to thin and dilate, and they aid the baby in its entry into the birth canal and then its progress through the birth canal.
- Contractions, Braxton Hicks
Contractions, Braxton Hicks: Irregular contractions of the womb (the uterus) occurring towards the middle of pregnancy in the first pregnancy and, earlier and more intensely, in subsequent pregnancies. These contractions tend to occur during physical activity. The uterus tightens for 30 to 60 seconds beginning at the top of the uterus; and the contraction gradually […]
Contraindicate: To make a treatment or procedure inadvisable because of a particular condition or circumstance. For examples, certain medications are contraindicated during pregnancy because of the danger they pose to the fetus and the use of aspirin is clearly contraindicated in small children because of the danger of Reye syndrome.
Contraindication: A condition which makes a particular treatment or procedure potentially inadvisable. A contraindication may be absolute or relative. An absolute contraindication is a situation which makes a particular treatment or procedure absolutely inadvisable. In children, for example, aspirin is almost always contraindicated because of the danger that aspirin will cause Reye syndrome. A relative […]
Contralateral: Of or pertaining to the other side. The opposite of iposilateral (the same side). For example, a stroke involving the right side of the brain may cause contralateral paralysis of the left leg.