Personally everyone should know some medical terms to smartly maintain their own health care. It is when a person is educated in medical terminology that more independence is kept. These medical terms could clarify things for you to avoid medication errors to keep you healthier.
When a doctor scribbles written information about the medicine you will be taking, it is not until you reach the pharmacist that you actually have the instructions printed on your medications. There are several abbreviations that are legible for you to read before you leave the doctor office. This knowledge will confirm what the doctor said and help you know right from the start to ask questions before leaving your physician for personal health awareness. These guides will teach you terms of frequency of your medicine, when it should be taken, if you are taking the correct dosage and at the correct time. With this education you will be kept in the know about important medical terms helpful for you on a daily basis. Without telling you what these letters stand for, these instructions will let you know their meanings. QD, either capitals or qd, lower case letters mean take everyday. This means once a day. Your question to the doctor might be when is the best time to take this, unless he has stated that to you. B.I.D. again capital or lower case b.i.d. means twice a day. Ask you health care provider how many hours should be between each dose. T.I.D. in capital or lower case letters t.i.d. mean three times a day. Your doctor could be asked what times this medicine needs to be taken. Q.I.D or q.i.d. means four times a day. Again the times this medicine should be taken should be discussed with your doctor.
Some medicines have medical terms that give specific instructions for taking. AC or ac means before meals, while PC or pc means after meals. A lower case c with a line over the top means with meals or at least with food. These medical instructions are particularly important to take with food or avoid interference with food. Some medicines have medical terms that give specific instructions of their chemical composition requiring these important instructions.
Any medical term that has the word scope or scopy attached to it means to look. Sigmoidoscopy is an examination of the sigmoid colon part of the intestines. A cystoscope is equipment to look into the bladder, so the examination is called a cystoscopy.
Some surgical procedures are done in the doctors office, clinic or out patient surgical center and not necessarily in the hospital operating room. Ectomy is a word, when attached to a physical part of the body means to remove or take away. Many modes are used in this specific medical term. An example is a skin tag, which can be removed by a sterile burning off of that piece of flesh which includes only minutes of professional attention. No anesthesia is needed, nor a dressing afterward. Codes are often used for billing purposes, however your health care professional might refer to this as: pedunclectomy. An explanation of this is removing of the stalk (peduncle). More common examples are: an appendectomy, which is removing of the appendix and a prostatectomy meaning removal of the prostate gland.
Many picture medical terms are used in physical diagnosing, confirmation of internal organ function along with follow-up medical or surgical procedures. Radiation is used for some, while others use another means to acquire the pictures needed. Graphy is often attached to a specific organ when a picture of some type is desired. As an example is hystersalpingography, which is an x-ray of a woman's uterus, and the fallopian tubes. This x-ray, like some, requires dye to be inserted to outline the target areas wanted for picture results. Even though the word Ultrasound is often used alone the complete name is ultrasonography. MRI is a common x-ray word however magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses no ionizing radiation. The powerful magnetic field and radio frequency fields are utilized instead.
Wonderful and a very detailed list. H5!
Additional terms it's good to know: HS means take the medication at night (generally before bedtime) and QOD means every other day. It's always a good idea to read the doctor scribble before giving it to a busy pharmacist.
So many things are not explained to patients. Thanks for the list on medical terms you should know.
Thanks for the explanation of prescription times and instructions...I'm always confused by those!
I definitely resonate with your thought about "smartly maintaining your own health". These days we are more and more dictated to monitor our personal health. You did a good community service in writing this one my friend. (I actually was familiar with most, having worked for nurses 13 years.)
These are all really important terms that you need to know. Thanks for sharing. Tweeting your listmyfive.
Good points. Doctors are human too....so, it's a good idea to be able to decipher their handwritings before goind to the pharmacist.
Thank you for this informative list! It's very important for people to know and understand what's going on with their treatment.
Great list. You'd think the pharmacists would write things in plain English. Thank you.
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