Medical Terminology: The Language Of Health Care And Medicine

The medical field is experiencing a rapid growth in number of people employed, and the rate is expected to continue to rise in the near future. There are new positions being filled every day. You don't have to go to medical school and become a doctor to work in the health care industry. There is a continued need for qualified professionals to meet all types of demands for the sick and injured. In order to provide consistent, effective care, all of these professionals need to be able to understand one another. They all must learn the same medical terminology.

Doctors must be able to communicate with other doctors, nurses, and staff about a patient's condition. Using medical terminology allows a doctor to do so without confusion, as all medical personnel learn the same rules and practices to describe the body, its parts, and conditions that affect them.

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There is a basic structure to all medical terminology that involves root words, prefixes, and suffixes. This allows all health care professionals to determine the meaning of a term if they are unsure of what is being described. There are also dictionaries of medical terminology that may be consulted for more specific meanings, or if the meaning of a term is still unclear once it has been broken down into its component parts.

If a doctor or other health care worker describes a patient as having renal failure, for example, it is understood by most medical professionals that a condition involving some type of failure of the kidneys is present. The term "renal" comes from the Latin language, meaning kidneys, and the failure of these organs is a condition that most health care workers are familiar with.

Other workers in the health care industry must also be familiar with medical terminology in order to perform their duties effectively. Physical therapists, for example, must understand what illnesses or injuries a patient suffers from and how this will affect one's treatment plan. If a patient has suffered from a cerebrovascular accident that has affected his or her mobility, the physical therapist will recognize the patient has had a stroke and must be conscious of not designing a treatment plan that is too strenuous for the patient.

If a paramedic or emergency room nurse is told that a patient has experienced a cardiac event, it will be understood that a heart attack has occurred. The medical professional will know the correct course of action to take to provide the proper, effective care for this type of condition. Using the proper medical terminology is essential, especially in these types of emergency situations, where time is of the essence.

A surgeon is another prime example of a health care professional who must understand medical terminology in order to perform his or her function correctly. If a transradial amputation is ordered for a patient, the surgeon will understand that the forearm of the patient must be removed due to some condition that is adversely affecting this portion of the body.

Medical Terminology: The Language Of Health Care And Medicine

Whether practicing medicine in emergency care situations, in a hospital surgical setting, as a physical therapist treating the symptoms of illness or injury, or any number of other functions, health care workers must speak the same language in order to communicate effectively about the condition of their patients and the types of care that they require. Medical terminology is the key to this effective communication, and it provides a common bond between all areas of the health care field. Those who need to incorporate this "second language" into their careers will need to successfully complete medical terminology courses, which are offered though many accredited online colleges.

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