case finding:

identifying a previously unknown or unrecognized condition in apparently healthy or asymptomatic persons and offering presymptomatic treatment to those so identified.

completely mandatory:

situation in which a government agency requires citizens to undergo a screening test, and sanctions those who do not comply.

conditionally mandatory:

situation in which either government or a private institution makes access to a designated service or opportunity contingent on participation in a screening program.


communication process by which individuals and their family members are given information about the nature, risks, burden and benefits of testing, and the meaning of test results.


the retrovirus, human immunodeficiency virus, that is responsible for most cases of AIDS worldwide.

Neural tube defect (NTD):

major birth defect affecting the brain and spinal column.


Non-directive patient choice:

situation in which individuals are provided information about a test and the choice is explicitly left to them.

phenylketonuria (PKU):

hereditary metabolic disorder, in which a deficiency of an enzyme leads to the accumulation of the amino acid phenylalanine, resulting in severe mental retardation if not appropriately treated.

routine with notification:

situation in which individuals are informed that a certain test is a standard part of prenatal care, and of their right to refuse before the testing is done.

routine without notification:

situation in which individuals are routinely and automatically tested unless they expressly ask that a test not be done.


application of a test to all individuals in a defined population.

sickle cell disease (SCD):

an autosomal recessive hemolytic anemia occurring most frequently in African Americans, but also in persons of Mediterranean origin and others.


monitoring the incidence or prevalence of a disease in a defined population over time, or comparing the incidence or prevalence among different populations.


application of a test or measurement to selected individuals for the purpose of identifying a disease or medical condition.

zidovudine (ZDV) (also knows as AZT):

antiretroviral drug found to significantly reduce perinatal transmission of HIV.

The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement