List of Abbreviations

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mrbrandman
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Below is a list of abbreviations of both medical & phorum lingo to help out some of those who are confused by them and people who are new. I know many of you know these, especially the insanely basic ones, but Pharmer.org welcomes all, experienced or not so I decided to include them.

  1. BID - Twice daily, applies to the directions for taking medication. Doctors use these abbreviations on the prescription to direct usuage.
  2. TID - Three times daily, applies to the directions for taking medication. Doctors use these abbreviations on the prescription to direct usuage.
  3. QID - Four times daily, applies to the directions for taking medication. Doctors use these abbreviations on the prescription to direct usuage.
  4. Q6h - To be taken every 6 hours, applies to the directions for taking medication. Doctors use these abbreviations on the prescription to direct usuage.
  5. Q8h - To be taken every 8 hours, applies to the directions for taking medication. Doctors use these abbreviations on the prescription to direct usuage.
  6. Q+?NUMBER+'h'(hour, thanks Solo) - Q+"X" number + 'h'  means to be taken every "X" hours.
  7. PO - To be taken by mouth, applies to the directions for taking medication. Doctors use these abbreviations on the prescription to direct usuage.
  8. NPO - Nothing by mouth. Doctors give this order usually to a patient going to surgery or being tested that they dont want having any fluids or food.
  9. PRN - As needed, applies to directions for taking medication. IE 1 PO TID PRN break thru pain=1 tab taken by mouth 3xs a day as needed. No BTP, no meds.
  10. PER - Pharmacy Exception Request, a process that some insurance companies require a DR to do to cover drugs not in their formulary (list of approved drugs)
  11. OP - Original Poster, applies to the author of the thread topic in the forums or in another context it can mean original post
  12. GAD - General Anxiety Disorder. Anxiety that is present most of the time, generally anxious most of the time. Irrational fears, upset stomach etc.
  13. SAD - Social Anxiety Disorder. Anxiety that presents in social situations. Fear of puclic speaking, irrational fears of people talking about them, looking at them.
  14. PD - Panic Disorder. Anxiety that comes on strong and quick. Racing heartbeat, irrational fear, fear of going crazy or losing control, can feel like a heart attack.
  15. DDD - Degenerative Disc Disease. A condition in where the discs in the spine deteriorate. Discs commonly bulge or herniate from this condition.
  16. PM - Pain Management
  17. PMD - Pain Management Doctor. A doctor that handles pain specifically. Usually an anesthesiologist with sub specialty in pain management.
  18. PCP - Primary Care Physician. Basically your family doctor. Many insurances allow you a PCP & visits to other doctors or specialists require a PCP referral.
  19. NP - Nurse Practitioner
  20. PA - Physicians Assistant
  21. RN - Registered Nurse
  22. LVN - Licensed Vocational Nurse
  23. BTP - Break Thru Pain. Pain that breaks through a baseline medication. Usually occurs from activities etc.
  24. BTCP - Break Thru Cancer Pain. Pain that breaks through the baseline medication in cancer patients.
  25. BTP MED- Medication used to treat break thru pain. These are immediate release meds; roxicodone, norco, MSIR, Oxy IR, Opana IR etc. Actiq/Fentora for cancer.
  26. IR - Immediate Release. Complete amount of medication is released immediately after administration. Roxicodone, Norco, MSIR, Oxy IR, Actiq Fentora
  27. ER - Extended Release. Medication is released slowly. MS Contin, OxyContin, Opana ER
  28. CR - Controlled Release Medication is released slowly. MS Contin, OxyContin, Opana ER
  29. IV - Intravenus. Route of administration in the vein. Medication works immediately but has a shorter duration.
  30. IM - Intramuscular. Route of administration in the muscle, usually arm or rear end. Medication takes longer to take effect but lasts longer.
  31. SQ/SUB Q - Subcutaneuos. Route of administration under the skin. The slowest absorption rate.
  32. SL - Sublingual. Under the tongue.
  33. HBP - High Blood Pressure
  34. MG - Milligram. Unit of measurement, weight.
  35. MCG - Microgram. Unit of measurement, weight. Used in the forum when talking about fentanyl transdermal patch, IE 75mcg patch releases 75mcg per hour.
  36. FPATCH/FTP - fentanyl transdermal patch
  37. SSRI - Selective Seratonin Reuptake Inhibitor. Prevents transmitters from reabsorbing seratonin thus helping depression, anxiety etc.
  38. SSNRI - Selective Seratonin Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitor. Affects chemicals in the brain like #37.
  39. MAOI - Monomine Oxidase Inhibitor. Medication for depression. Can also help smoking cessation.
  40. ADs/ANTI DEPS - Anti depressants
  41. OTC - Over the Counter. Medications that do not require a prescription.
  42. TAB - Tablet
  43. CAP - Capsule
  44. RX - Prescription
  45. DX - Diagnosis
  46. SCRIPT- Prescription
  47. OC - OxyContin
  48. OXY - Oxycodone
  49. IMO - In my opinion
  50. IMHO - In my honest/humble opinion
  51. TY - Thank You
  52. IDK - I dont know
  53. QTY - Quantity
  54. DEA - Drug Enforcement Agency
  55. FDA - Food and Drug Administration
  56. QS - "Quantity Sufficient, some doctors dont even take the time to figure out how many pills a script is for (such as tapering scripts, or increasing/decreasing as tolerated) but this is usually seen with liquid meds."**< From Solo's post below>**
  57. APAP - Acetaminophen brand name Tylenol
  58. NSAID - Non Steroidal Anti Inflamitory Drug
  59. TCA - Tri Cyclic Antidepressant         **<thanks htmom>**
  60. P/T - Patient                                     **<thanks Solo>**
  61. D/C - Discontinue                             **<thanks Solo>**
  62. PT - Physical Therapy                       **<thanks cats meow>**
  63. P/D - Per Day

 

More on # 10, please refer the Pain Medication Guide sticky thread in the Discussion of Prescription and OTC Medicine forum.

 

Thank everyone for their additions and reminders. Ive added content from below to help those who dont want to/ dont have time to read the entire thread. Last update, 10/12/09

 

goat
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here

is a bit of my post from last month...search for slang for much more contentWink

 

AbbreviationLatin TranslationWhat It Means
a.c.ante cibumbefore meals
b.i.d.bis in dietwice a day
b.i.n.bis in noctustwice a night
c@#*with
capcapsulacapsule
ddiesday
daw dispense as written (no substituting generic or brand name drugs)
gttguttadrop
h.s.hora somnibedtime
I.M. into the muscle
I.V. into the vein
mg milligram
ml milliliter
noxt at night
O.D.oculo dextroright eye
O.S.oculo sinistroleft eye
O.U.oculo utroin each eye
p.c.post cibumafter meals
p.o.per osby mouth
p.r.n.pro re nataas needed
pilpilulapill
qhquaque horaevery hour
q 3 hquaque 3 horaevery 3 hours
qAM every morning
qdquaque diedaily
q.i.d.quater in diefour times a day
q.o.d every other day
ssinewithout
s.l. under the tongue
tabtabellatablet
t.i.d.ter in diethree times a day
tsp teaspoon
tbsp tablespoon
ut dict as directed by doctor

mrbrandman
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I like the latin

I like the latin translations!

oneir
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My current job required me to

My current job required me to learn most of the common prescription abbreviations. At first it seemed really random but understanding the latin translation makes it easier. I looked up PRN once, out of curiousity and found it to mean 'pro re nata', translated literally as "as it is born". Stuff like that helps this stuff stick in memory...

But I think the most important thing I can say about this is to point out how ridiculous it is. Information as important and requiring such precision as medication instructions, dosage and route should be written in an unambiguous manner. Not only does the medical establishment use abbreviations (which often have multiple meanings, sometimes the confusion has lead to accidental hospital deaths) it also uses abbreviations from another language! If that isn't absurd I don't know what it is. I understand doctors need to save time where they can but seriously? On top of the ambigious abbreviations for words of a foreign language, doctor's handwriting is often atrocious. I'm surprised there aren't more medication errors that result from this. I'm glad to see many prescribers and pharmacies using computers in replace of this archaic system. Granted that automation has its downsides and potential for error but still it is better than what we have...

htmom
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NPO is another one used a

NPO is another one used a lot. Means nothing by mouth after midnight.   Htmom

mrbrandman
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I forgot about that one, I

I forgot about that one, I added it to my list. NPO means "nothing by mouth" Im sure midnight can be be specified but the general term is that the patient is to receive nothing by mouth. No food or liquids. This usually is before surgery, or while they are running tests. In a hospital setting a patient with an NPO order still receives medication, just no liquids or foods. Thanks for the addition htmom!

htmom
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The latin for NPO means

The latin for NPO means nothing past midnight.  If my horrible memory serves me right.  I can think of several occasions that NPO stands but the patient must drink contrast for CT,GI, etc.  Or the prep supersedes the NPO.  In the day to day running of a Hospital it works and we all know what it means.  Confusing?  Take care, htmom

WOODSTOCK
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I thought it

Was NOPE , nothing after midnite Woodstock

SoloCPhT
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NPO= non per os= not through

NPO= non per os= not through mouth, nothing by mouth, nothing per oral, not by mouth, etc.

Here is one that is commonly seen in the trade that a lot of people do not now what it is:

QS= Quantity Sufficient, some doctors dont even take the time to figure out how many pills a script is for (such as tapering scripts, or increasing/decreasing as tolerated) but this is usually seen with liquid meds.

Brandon, when doctors write scripts like q4-6 or q6 they usually follow it with an "H" as in q6h or q4-6h some doctors, usually younger doctors will write it q6o,q4-6o, etc. Most of the time the little o looks more like a degree symbol when written on the scripts. Im not sure if this is something new they are teaching doctors or if its seen more in hospital settings or what? Most likely its indicating every "q" whatever hours "#" orally "o"

Cats Meow
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Here is my list, some of

Here is my list, some of it is redundant with the postings above, but you can see it's very complete. Unfortunately, it didn't paste as nicely as my original document appears.


Abbreviation


Latin


Meaning

aa

ana

of each

ad

ad

up to

a.c.

ante cibum

before meals

a.d.

aurio dextra

right ear

ad lib.

ad libitum

use as much as one desires; freely

admov.

admove

apply

agit

agita

stir/shake

alt. h.

alternis horis

every other hour

a.m.

ante meridiem

morning, before noon

amp

ampule

amt

amount

aq

aqua

water

a.l., a.s.

aurio laeva, aurio sinister

left ear

A.T.C.

around the clock

a.u.

auris utrae

both ears

bis

bis

twice

b.i.d.

bis in die

twice daily

B.M.

bowel movement

bol.

bolus

as a large single dose (usually intravenously)

B.S.

blood sugar

B.S.A

body surface areas

cap., caps.

capsula

capsule

c

cum

with (usually written with a bar on top of the "c")

c

cibos

food

cc

cum cibos

with food, (but also cubic centimetre)

cf

with food

comp.

compound

cr., crm

cream

D5W

dextrose 5% solution (sometimes written as D5W)

D5NS

dextrose 5% in normal saline (0.9%)

D.A.W.

dispense as written

dc, D/C, disc

discontinue

dieb. alt.

diebus alternis

every other day

dil.

dilute

disp.

dispense

div.

divide

d.t.d.

dentur tales doses

give of such doses

D.W.

distilled water

elix.

elixir

e.m.p.

ex modo prescripto

as directed

emuls.

emulsum

emulsion

et

et

and

ex aq

ex aqua

in water

fl., fld.

fluid

ft.

fiat

make; let it be made

g

gram

gr

grain

gtt(s)

gutta(e)

drop(s)

H

hypodermic

h, hr

hora

hour

h.s.

hora somni

at bedtime

ID

intradermal

IM

intramuscular (with respect to injections)

inj.

injectio

injection

IP

intraperitoneal

IV

intravenous

IVP

intravenous push

IVPB

intravenous piggyback

L.A.S.

label as such

LCD

coal tar solution

lin

linimentum

liniment

liq

liquor

solution

lot.

lotion

M.

misce

mix

m, min

minimum

a minimum

mcg

microgram

mEq

milliequivalent

mg

milligram

mist.

mistura

mix

mitte

mitte

send

mL

millilitre

nebul

nebula

a spray

N.M.T.

not more than

noct.

nocte

at night

non rep.

non repetatur

no repeats

NS

normal saline (0.9%)

1/2NS

half normal saline (0.45%)

N.T.E.

not to exceed

o_2

both eyes, sometimes written as o2

o.d.

oculus dexter

right eye

o.s.

oculus sinister

left eye

o.u.

oculus uterque

both eyes

oz

ounce

per

per

by or through

p.c.

post cibum

after meals

p.m.

post meridiem

evening or afternoon

prn

pro re nata

as needed

p.o.

per os

by mouth or orally

p.r.

by rectum

pulv.

pulvis

powder

q

quaque

every

q.a.d.

quoque alternis die

every other day

q.a.m.

quaque die ante meridiem

every day before noon

q.h.

quaque hora

every hour

q.1h

quaque 1 hora

every 1 hour; (can replace "1" with other numbers)

q.d.

quaque die

every day

q.i.d.

quater in die

four times a day

q.o.d.

every other day

qqh

quater quaque hora

every four hours

q.s.

quantum sufficiat

a sufficient quantity

R

rectal

rep., rept.

repetatur

repeats

RL, R/L

Ringer's lactate

s

sine

without (usually written with a bar on top of the "s")

s.a.

secundum artum

use your judgement

SC, subc, subq, subcut

subcutaneous

sig

write on label

SL

sublingually, under the tongue

sol

solutio

solution

s.o.s., si op. sit

si opus sit

if there is a need

ss

semis

one half

stat

statim

immediately

supp

suppositorium

suppository

susp

suspension

syr

syrupus

syrup

tab

tabella

tablet

tal., t

talus

such

tbsp

tablespoon

troche

trochiscus

lozenge

tsp

teaspoon

t.i.d.

ter in die

three times a day

t.d.s.

ter die sumendum

three times a day

t.i.w.

three times a week

top.

topical

T.P.N.

total parenteral nutrition

tr, tinc., tinct.

tincture

u.d., ut. dict.

ut dictum

as directed

ung.

unguentum

ointment

U.S.P.

United States Pharmacopoeia

vag

vaginally

w

with

w/o

without

X

times

Y.O.

years old

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

ante cibum- ac before meals
bis in die - bid twice a day
gutta - gt drop
hora somni - hs at bedtime
oculus dexter - od right eye
oculus sinister- os left eye
per os - po by mouth
post cibum - pc after meals
pro re nata - prn as needed
quaque 3 hora - q3h every 3 hours
quaque die- qd every day
quater in die- qid 4 times a day
ter in die- tid 3 times a day

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

DX - Diagnosis

HX - History

mrbrandman
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Hey Solo, thanks. I totally

Hey Solo, thanks. I totally forgot about the "h". Ive never seen the "o", but I never really see young doctors. My previous primary doctor was young and wrote it out with the "h". I miss him, I identified with him because he was young and knew about pain. It made him a great pain doc.