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PREFIXES
A. Latin and Greek origin
B. Anatomy of a Medical Term
1. Dissect the word and it is less threatening.
a. Prefix…..at the beginning
b. Root……gives the essential meaning of the word
c. Combining vowel…..single vowel, usually an “0” at the end of
the root, which makes the word easier to pronounce.
d. Combining form…..root + combining vowel
e. Suffix…..at the end of a word
C. Prefixes…..added to the beginning to modify the meaning.
1. Contrasting Prefixes
a. A….without or no……..ex: atraumatic
b. An...without or no……..ex: anuria
c. Ab…away from……….ex: abduction
Ad…toward…………...ex: adduction
d. Dys…difficult or bad…ex: dysphagia
Eu….good or normal… ex: euthyroid
e. Endo..within or inside…ex: endocrine
Exo…without, outside of…ex: exocrine
Ecto…outside of………ex: ectoparasite
f. Hyper….higher, increased…ex: hyperthyroid
Hypo…..lower, decreased….ex: hypothyroid
g. Inter….between….ex: interdigital
Intra….within……ex: intradigital
h. Poly….many, excessive….ex: polyuria
Oligo…little or scant……. ex: oliguria
i. Pre…before…….ex: preanesthetic
Post..after………ex: postanesthetic
j. Sub…below, under….ex: sublingual
Super or supra…above…ex: suprascapular
D. Directional Prefixes
1. epi…..upper………ex: epidermis
2. extra,,,outside…….ex: extracurricular
3. infra…below, beneath….ex: infraorbital
4. meta…beyond……ex: metaphysical
5. per….throughout…ex: percutaneous
6. trans…across……..ex: transabdominal
7. ultra…increase more than normal….ultraviolet
E. Other Prefixes or word roots
1. arthro…….joint
2. gastro…….stomach
3. pan……….without
4. osteo……..bone
5. hema……..blood
6. hepa……...liver
7. nephro……kidney
8. cardio…….heart
9. neuro…….nerve
10. oto……….ear
11. optho…….eye
12. myo……...muscle
13. thoraco…..ribs
14. entero……intestine
15. myelo……nerve, spinal cord
16. derm……..skin
17. pneumo….lungs or air
18. cephalo…..brain
19. cysto……..bladder
20. podo……..foot
21. pyo………pus
22. rhino…….nose
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