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Common Medical Abbreviations - 2

Lara is in a nursing assistant class. She is taking classes about common medical abbreviations used in healthcare. The teacher said that using abbreviations can save time. The teacher also said that it is very important to know and understand the most common abbreviations. Making a mistake on an abbreviation can be bad for a patient.

Today Lara is studying with her friend Mariam.  The two friends usually study before class every day. Today they are helping each other to remember what they learned last week. They know there will be a test on common abbreviations next week.

Mariam asks Lara, “What does ac mean?”

Lara says, “Oh, I know that one! It means before meals.”

Mariam says, “You are correct. Now, what does pc mean?”

Lara thinks for a minute and gives the correct answer. She says, “It means after meals. I remember that ‘p’ means past. That helps me remember pc is after or past meals.” Mariam likes the strategy Lara uses. “That is a great way to remember the abbreviation.”

Next Lara asks Mariam some questions on common medical abbreviations.  Lara says, “What does ABD mean?”

 

Mariam answers correctly that it means abdomen.  “My strategy is to remember the first three letters… ABD.”  

The two friends continued to study together for another 30 minutes. They reviewed some of the other common medical abbreviations from class. These are the abbreviations they are studying:

BP = Blood Pressure

DNR = Do Not Resuscitate (do not give CPR)

HOB = raise Head of Bed

PT = Physical Therapy

qh = each hour

VS = Vital Signs (pulse rate, temperature, blood pressure, respiration rate)

hs = hours of sleep

noct = in the night

c = with

s  (with a line over it) = without

Lara and Mariam know there will be more medical abbreviations to learn. They will also have to use strategies to remember the abbreviations. Studying together is a good strategy for remembering. It is also a fun way to practice what they learn in class.

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© 2015 by Southwest Adult Basic Education

Project made financially possible through grants from:

Southwest Initiative Foundation, Marshall Community Foundation, Southwest Regional Transition Partners, Southwest Adult Basic Education, Marshall Healthcare Partners