Medical Terminology

Medical Terminology
Meds B 60
Sarah Baron, MPH, Ed.D.
[email protected]
Medical Terminology
For Health Care Professionals
8th ed.
Chapters 1-3
Learning Outcomes
 Overview of Med Term goals
 Differences between signs/symptoms,
prognosis and diagnosis
 Understand the method of breaking words
apart – decodable and nondecodable
Prefix, root, suffix, combining vowels
 Identify one tool to assist with studying
 Begin learning a least 10 vocabulary words a
MEDS B 60 Goals
 Recognize and identify basic word parts
relating to medical terminology.
 Analyze word parts to define and build
medical terms.
 Discuss the anatomy and function of each
body system relating to medical terminology.
 Identify and define common pathological
conditions including signs and symptoms
related to medical terminology.
 Demonstrate proficiency in the spoken and
written language of medicine
Learning medical terminology
 Is imperative if you want to work in the
medical field
 Will help you decipher medical reports and
 Will enable you to help your family and
friends with health issues
The 5 Medical Language Skills
 Listening
Understanding what language you hear
and relaying the information
 Reading
Medical words and medical reports
You need to practice reading medical language
and thinking about it to become proficient
The 5 Medical Language Skills
 Thinking and Analyzing
How does it apply to your patient or situation
Need to think about the meaning
Learn how and why questions
 Speaking
Learn to say the correct pronunciations
Communicate without mistaking your meaning
 Writing
Learn to spell correctly
Misspelling could result in mistakes such as a wrong procedure done.
Introduction to Healthcare Terminology
 Derivation of Healthcare Terms – mostly
 Greek and Latin (page 3)
 Develop large vocabulary by learning
decodable word parts and rules that join them
 Diagnosis and Prognosis
Diagnosis is the disease or condition named after
evaluating the patient
Acute –begins abruptly and severely and ends after
a short time
Chronic –develops slowly and lasts a long time
Prognosis is the prediction of the probable
outcome of the disease
Turn to the person next to you and use this in a
 Signs and Symptoms
 Symptoms are subjective indications of
Signs are objective findings seen or
Take one minute and think of a few others.
Diagnosis and Treatment
 Diagnostic Procedures  lab tests, x-rays, ultrasounds, CAT scan, MRI, others
 Therapeutic Interventions –
appropriate treatment for condition, surgical,
 Instruments – many terms to describe health care
instruments or diagnostic instruments such as:
-graph = instrument to record,
-meter, instrument to measure
Nondecodable Terms
 Cannot be divided into component parts, entire
definition must be memorized
 Asthma (Greek = panting)
 Definition: Respiratory disorder characterized by
recurring episodes of paroxysmal dyspnea (difficulty
 Cataract (Greek = waterfall)
 Definition: Progressive opacification of the lens
 Named after person who first identified the
condition, procedure or devised object.
 Example:
Cesarean Section
Alzheimer Disease
 Shortened terms to a number of letters for the sake of
 Examples:
CABG – Coronary Artery Bypass Graft
CAD - Coronary Artery Disease
MI – Myocardial Infarction
ABG’s – Arterial Blood Gases
CBC – Complete Blood Count
 Check Appendix III page 811 in the back of your book
 Many abbreviations are no longer acceptable in
healthcare due to confusion and medical mistakes
Decodable Terms
 Terms that can be broken into parts
 The fundamental elements in medical
terminology are the component parts used
to build medical words.
 The abbreviations used for component parts
in this text –page 3 of text for reference
P for prefix –before, modifies or alters
R for root- foundation of word
CV for combining vowel
CF for combining form
S for suffix- at end, modifies or alters
word (good place to start)
 Appears at the beginning of the medical term
 Alter or modify meaning or change meaning
(e.g., ab-normal- away from normal)
 Not all medical terms have one
 Gives more information about the term
Absence – nulli-, an-, aLocation – epi-, peri-, endoNumber or quantity - hyper-, hypo-, poly-, bi-,triState – dys-
Word Roots
 Word Roots
Foundation of term
Describes what term is about
Every term has at least 1, some have 2 or 3
 Example:
Hepat Hepat(itis)
Cardi my Cardiomyo(pathy)
 Always at the end of the term
 Alter or modify the meaning
 Qualifies the term as a:
Disease or Condition – -osis, -itis, -uria,
-pathy, -ia,- emia
Procedure and Instruments – -plasty, rrhaphy, -ectomy,-metry, -meter
Specialties and specialists - -ist, -logy, -logist
Suffixes – a good place to start
 All suffixes, when written, are preceded
by a hyphen (–) to signify that they
are to be linked to the end of a root or
combining form.
 Suffixes are used to denote:
Pathological conditions
Surgical or diagnostic procedures
Conditions, treatments or specialists
Size or measurement
Noun or adjective
Combining Forms
 Word roots plus combining vowel
 Example:
 Medical Term
Cardi/o + my/o + pathy = cardiomyopathy
 Disease of heart muscle
Hepat/o + itis + hepatitis
 Inflammation of liver
Combining Vowels
 Usually an o, occasionally an i (rarely a, e, u)
Used between multiple word roots or word
roots and suffixes to join words by making
them easier to pronounce
 Example:
Cardiomyopathy (correct)
Cardimypathy (incorrect)
Understanding Medical Terminology
Spelling Rules
 If Suffix Starts With a Vowel, a combining
vowel is not needed (arthritis)
If Suffix Starts With a Consonant, a combining
vowel is needed (cardiology)
Spelling Rules
 Joining Word Roots
A combining vowel is used regardless of
whether the word roots start with vowels or
oste/o arthritis
cardi/o + my/o + pathy
Spelling Rules
 Sequencing Word Roots
Combining forms are joined in logical order or as
they are studied
Study of ear, nose, throat –otorhinolaryngology
Break these words apart above
 Pronunciation of Unusual Letter
 Medical Dictionary Online Is My BEST
 Eu – (u) - eupnea
 Ph – (f) - phalanges
 Pn – (n) - pnemonia
 Ps – (s) - psychlogy
 Pt – (t) - ptosis
 Rh, rrh – (r) - rhinitis
 X – (z) - xeroderma
Flashcard Challenge
• Prefix and Suffix
• If you don’t have a book, share
• Will post a flashcard challenge in either study
blue or quizlet
• Quizlet
• Studyblue
• Pages, 5, 31, 33, 35, and 47
• Activity PPT