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Introduction to the Male and Female Reproductive Function

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Reproductive toxicity has many unique and challenging differences from toxicity to other systems. Whereas other forms of environmental toxicity typically involve development of disease in an exposed individual, because reproduction requires interaction between two individuals, reproductive toxicity will be expressed within a reproductive unit, or couple. This unique, couple- dependent aspect, although obvious, makes reproductive toxicology distinct. For example, it is ppossiblethat exposure to a toxicant by one member of a reproductive couple (e.g., the male) will be manifest by an adverse reproductive outcome in the other member of the couple (e.g., increased frequency of spontaneous abortion). Any attempt to deal with environmental causes of reproductive toxicity must address the couple-specific aspect.

There are other unique aspects that reflect the challenges of reproductive toxicology. Unlike renal, cardiac or pulmonary function, reproductive function occurs intermittently. This means that occupational exposures can interfere with reproduction but go unnoticed during periods when fertility is not desired. This intermittent characteristic can make the identification of a reproductive toxicant in humans more difficult. Another unique characteristic of reproduction, which follows directly from the consideration above, is that complete assessment of the functional integrity of the reproductive system requires that the couple attempt pregnancy.

 

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Contents

Preface
Part I. The Body
Blood
Cancer
Cardiovascular System
Digestive System
Mental Health
Musculoskeletal System
Nervous System
Renal-Urinary System
Reproductive System
Resources
Respiratory System
Sensory Systems
Skin Diseases
Systematic Conditions
Part II. Health Care
Part III. Management & Policy
Part IV. Tools and Approaches
Part V. Psychosocial and Organizational Factors
Part VI. General Hazards
Part VII. The Environment
Part VIII. Accidents and Safety Management
Part IX. Chemicals
Part X. Industries Based on Biological Resources
Part XI. Industries Based on Natural Resources
Part XII. Chemical Industries
Part XIII. Manufacturing Industries
Part XIV. Textile and Apparel Industries
Part XV. Transport Industries
Part XVI. Construction
Part XVII. Services and Trade
Part XVIII. Guides

Reproductive System Additional Resources

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