Friday, January 22, 2010

Basic Medical Abbreviations




I was cleaning out a cabinet and discovered my old Medical Abbreviations book from back in the day. (I used to work in a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit).

The following list is a few basic medical abbreviations and common medical terms that are helpful to know.

At some point, either for ourselves, our children, or our aging parents, we will have direct interaction with the medical community.



For some people, hospitals, healthcare workers, and foreign medical terminology add to already stressful circumstances.

My hope is that being familiar with some medical terminology before crisis occurs will help navigation through the medical community a little bit easier.


Most abbreviations can have multiple meanings. I listed the ones I thought were the most common.

• ABG- Arterial Blood Gas- when blood is drawn for testing from an artery instead of, the more common, vein.

• Abd- Abdomen

• AKA- All Known Allergies (NKA- No Known Allergies or NKDA- No Known Drug Allergies)

• APPY- appendectomy

• BID- twice daily (often seen on prescriptions)

• BM- Bowel Movement (very important)

• BP- Blood Pressure

• CABS- Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery

• CATH- catheter or catheterization

• CM- cardiac monitor

• CT- chest tube (CT scan - computed tomography)

• CVA- cerebrovascular accident ( stroke)

• DOT- date of transfer

• ECHO- echocardiogram

• EPI- epinephrine

• ETOH- Alcohol

• F/U- follow-up

• HG or Hgb- hemoglobin

• ICE- ice, compression, and elevation

• I & O- intake and output

• LDR- labor, delivery, and recovery

• LIQ- liquid

• MED- medicine

• NV- nausea and vomiting

• OT- occupational therapy

• PFT- Pulmonary Function Test

• PRN- as occasion requires

• q- every

• RBC- red blood cell

• RSR- regular sinus rhythm

• Rx- prescription/drug

• SAT- saturated (often referring to level of oxygen saturation)

• SUX- suction

• T & P- temperature and pulse

• TV- television (just checking to see if you're paying attention)

• Tyl- Tylenol

• UA-urinalysis

• UAC- upper airway congestion

• VBG- venous blood gas

• WBC- white blood cell

• XGP- xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis ( I couldn't do this list and not put a big mouthful of a word on here :) I think it's chronic kidney infection but don't quote me.

• YTD- year to date

• YTDY- yesterday

All the Z ones were strange so I'll stop here.

This has to be the most random post ever.

Ah, but at least it was educational.



3 comments:

hitherto said...

WOHOO!!!!!!
GO EDUCATIONAL RANDOMNESS!!!!!!

Ann said...

eheheeheh...
TV=Totally Vacillating,Time to Vomit, Terrible Vacuum, Tiny Vulnerability, Tempting Vortex

Just to name a few:) heheheh

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