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STD Related Terms

- E -

  • Efficacy

  • Strength, effectiveness. The ability of a drug to control or cure an illness. Efficacy should be distinguished from activity, which is limited to a drug's immediate effects on the microbe triggering the disease.


  • A diagnostic test utilizing an enzyme-labeled immunoreactant (antigen or antibody) and an immunosorbent (antigen or antibody bound to a solid support). The most common test used to detect the presence of HIV antibodies in the blood, which are indicative of ongoing HIV infection. One type of ELISA is the preliminary test for HIV antibodies (to detect HIV infection). A positive ELISA test result must be confirmed by another test called a Western Blot.

  • Encephalitis

  • A brain inflammation of viral or other microbial origin. Symptoms include headaches, neck pain, fever, nausea, vomiting and nervous system problems. Several types of opportunistic infections can cause encephalitis.

  • Endocervical curettage

  • The removal of tissue from the inside of the cervix using a spoon-shaped instrument called a curette.

  • Endometrium

  • The mucous membrane that lines the uterus.

  • Envelope

  • The outer covering of a virus, sometimes called the coat.

  • Enzyme

  • A cellular protein whose shape allows it to hold together several other molecules in close proximity to each other. Enzymes in this way are able to induce chemical reactions in other substances with little expenditure of energy and without being changed itself.

  • Epidemiology

  • The branch of medical science that studies the incidence, distribution and control of disease in a population.

  • Epithelial

  • Refers to the cell linings covering most internal and external surfaces of the body and its organs.

  • Epitope

  • A unique molecular shape or sequence carried on a micro-organism that triggers a specific antibody or cellular immune response.

  • Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV)

  • A member of the herpesvirus family that causes one of two kinds of mononucleosis (the other is caused by CMV). It infects the nose and throat and is contagious. It lies dormant in the lymph glands and has been associated with Burkitt's lymphoma (see) and oral hairy leukoplakia (see).

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STD Terms

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