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Table 1 Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) considered relevant for locating sex-specific clinical evidence and their definitions.

From: Locating sex-specific evidence on clinical questions in MEDLINE: a search filter for use on OvidSP™

MeSH term Definition (Scope Note)
Sex factors Maleness or femaleness as a constituent element or influence contributing to the production of a result. It may be applicable to the cause or effect of a circumstance. It is used with human or animal concepts but should be differentiated from SEX CHARACTERISTICS, anatomical or physiological manifestations of sex, and from SEX DISTRIBUTION, the number of males and females in given circumstances.
Sex characteristics Those characteristics that distinguish one SEX from the other. The primary sex characteristics are the OVARIES and TESTES and their related hormones. Secondary sex characteristics are those which are masculine or feminine but not directly related to reproduction.
Sex distribution The number of males and females in a given population. The distribution may refer to how many men or women or what proportion of either in the group. The population is usually patients with a specific disease but the concept is not restricted to humans and is not restricted to medicine.
Sex The totality of characteristics of reproductive structure, functions, PHENOTYPE, and GENOTYPE, differentiating the MALE from the FEMALE organism.
Sex ratio The number of males per 100 females.
Gender identity Socially-constructed identity of male or female.
  NOTE: psychological; do not confuse with SEX CHARACTERISTICS (physiological); do not confuse with SEXUAL ORIENTATION see SEX BEHAVIOR: gender identity is knowing that one is male or female; sexual orientation is preferring heterosexual or homosexual behavior; no qualif.