Medical Abbreviations – Symbol

Medical Abbreviations-Symbol

Commonly used medical symbols and their meanings are listed below.

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Add Tertiary
~about (approximate)
<less than or equal to
>greater than
«to and from
//parallel bars
±either or
up and down

Medical Abbreviations-Prescription

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ABX – antibiotics

AC – before meals

Ad lib – at will, as desired

BID – bis in dies (twice a day)

CAP – capsule

GTT – drop-liquid measurement

i – 1

ii – 2

iii – 3

iv – 4

v – 5

MDD – maximum daily dose

NPO – nothing by mouth

OCP – oral contraceptive pill

OPV – oral polio vaccine

OTC – over the counter

PC – after meals

PCN – penicillin

PNV – prenatal vitamins

PO – per os (by mouth)

PRN – as needed

q2h – every 2 hours

q3h – every 3 hours

qam – every morning

qd – once a day

qh – once every hour

qhs – at bedtime

qid – four times a day

qod – every other day

qpm – every evening

RDI – recommended daily intake

Rx – prescription, treatment

SC/SQ – subcutaneous

TAB – tablet

TIW – three times a week

Medical Abbreviations-Care

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AXR – abdominal x-ray

BAC – blood alcohol content

BC – birth control

BE – barium enema

BMT – bone marrow transplant

Bx – biopsy

BRP – bathroom privileges

CPR – cardiopulmonary resuscitation

CXR – chest x-ray

ECC – emergency cardiac care

ECG or EKG – electrocardiogram

ECMO – extracorporeal membrane oxygenation

ECT – electroconvulsive therapy

ECV – external cephalic version

FB – foreign body

FNA – fine needle aspiration

FOBT – fecal occult blood testing

GLT – glucose loading test

GTT – glucose tolerance test

H20 – water

I&D – incision and drainage

IM – intramuscular

I&O – intake and output

IV – intravenous

IUPC – intrauterine pressure catheter

In vitro – in the laboratory

In vivo – in the body

KUB – kidney, ureter, bladder (x-ray)

OGTT – oral glucose tolerance test

PAP – pulmonary artery pressure; Papanicolaou test

PEEP – positive end expiratory pressure

PT – physical therapy

T&C – type and cross (blood)

TPA – tissue plasminogen activator (dissolve clots), total parenteral alimentation (intravenous nutritional needs)

UA – urinalysis

US – ultrasound

XRT – external radiation therapy

Medical Abbreviations-Diagnosis or Condition

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ADHD – attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

AF – acid-fast

AIDS – acquired immune deficiency syndrome

A&O – alert and oriented

AOB – alcohol on breath

ARDS – adult respiratory distress syndrome

ARF – acute renal failure, acute rheumatic fever

BAD – bipolar affective disorder

BM – bowel movement

BP – blood pressure

CA – cancer

CAB – carotid artery bruit

CABG – coronary artery bypass graft

CAD – coronary artery disease

CBC – complete blood count

CF – cystic fibrosis

C/F – chills, fever

CFT – complement fixation testing

CHD – congenital heart disease

CHF – congestive heart failure

COLD – chronic obstructive lung disease

COPD – chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

CP – chest pain

CP – cerebral palsy

C/S – cesarean section

CV – cardiovascular

CVA – cerebral vascular accident (stroke)

DTR – deep tendon reflex

DVT – deep venous thrombosis

Dx – diagnosis

EBL – estimated blood loss

EBV – Epstein-Barr virus

EC – eye contact

ECASA – enteric coated acetylsalicylic acid

EGC – early gastric cancer

FAS – fetal alcohol syndrome

FB – foreign body

F/C – fever, chills

FEF – forced expiratory flow

FHR – fetal heart rate

FM – fetal movement

FRC – functional residual capacity

FSE – fetal scalp electrode

FSH – follicle stimulating hormone

FT – full term

FX – fracture

GA – gestational age

GH – growth hormone

GHRH – growth hormone releasing hormone

GI – gastrointestinal

GLT – glucose loading test

GSW – gunshot wound

GTT – glucose tolerance test

GU – genitourinary

HA – headache

HA – hemolytic anemia

HAV – hepatitis A virus

HBV – hepatitis B virus

Hb – hemoglobin

HCV – hepatitis C virus

HDL – high density lipoprotein

HDV – hepatitis D virus

HIV – human immunodeficiency virus

HPA – hypothalamic suppression test

HR – heart rate

HTN – hypertension

IBD – inflammatory bowel disease

IBS – inflammatory bowel syndrome

ICP – intracranial pressure

IDDM – insulin dependent diabetes mellitus

IPF – idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

IUI – intrauterine insemination

IUP – intrauterine pregnancy

IVF – in vitro fertilization

IVIG – intravenous immune globulin

IVP – intravenous push

JCV – JC virus

JRA – juvenile rheumatoid arthritis

JVD – jugular venous distension

KS – Kaposi sarcoma

LAD – leukocyte adhesion deficiency

LBP – lower back pain

LBW – low birth weight

LIH – left inguinal hernia

LOF – loss of fluid

MD – muscular dystrophy

MR – mental retardation

MS – multiple sclerosis

NAD – no acute distress

Nat/O – birth

NIDDM – non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus

NM – neuromuscular

N/V – nausea vomiting

NVD – normal vaginal delivery

OCD – obsessive compulsive disorder

ON – optic neuritis

OSA – obstructive sleep apnea

PD – Parkinson’s disease

PE – pulmonary embolism

PKD – polycystic kidney disease

PID – pelvic inflammatory disease

PIH – pregnancy induced hypertension

PMS – premenstrual syndrome

PTSD – post-traumatic stress disorder

RA – rheumatoid arthritis

RAD – reactive airway disease

RDS – respiratory distress syndrome

REM – rapid eye movements

RHD – rheumatic heart disease

RXN – reaction

SAB – spontaneous abortion

SBO – small bowel obstruction

SBS – shaken baby syndrome

SOB – shortness of breath

STD – sexually transmitted disease

TAH – total abdominal hysterectomy

TB – tuberculosis

TBI – traumatic brain injury

TGA – transient global amnesia

UC – ulcerative colitis

UO – urine output

URI – upper respiratory infection

UTI – urinary tract infection

VB – vaginal bleeding

VBAC – vaginal birth after caesarean section

VF – ventricular fibrillation

VH – vaginal hysterectomy, hallucination

VIP – voluntary interruption of pregnancy

Medical Abbreviations-Body Description

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ABD – abdomen

AD – right ear

AL – left ear

AU – both ears

BMD – bone mass density

BMI – body mass index

BMR – basal metabolic rate

CBD – common bile duct

CBF – cerebral blood flow

FL – femur length

FROM – free range of motion

HC – head circumference

IBW – ideal body weight

LLL – left lower lobe

LLQ – left lower quadrant

LUL – left upper lobe

LUQ – left upper quadrant

LV – left ventricle

OD – right eye

OS – left eye

OU – both eyes

PNS – peripheral nervous system

RA – right atrium

RUL – right upper lobe

RUQ – right upper quadrant

RV – right ventricle, residual volume

TLC – total lung capacity

UE – upper extremity

WT – weight

Medical Abbreviations- Fetal Position and Presentation

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LOAleft occiput anterior
LOTleft occiput transverse
LOPleft occiput posterior
ROAright occiput anterior
ROTright occiput transverse
ROPright occiput posterior
LSA (RSA)`left sacrum anterior (right)
LST (RST)left sacrum transverse (right)
LSP (RSP)left sacrum posterior (right)
LFA (RFA)left fronto-anterior (right)
LFT (RFT)left fronto-transverse (right)
LFP (RFT)left fronto-posterior (right)
LMA (RMA)left mento-anterior (right)
LMT (RMT)left mento posterior (right)

Medical Abbreviations-Pelvic Measurement (Pelvimetry)

DCdiagonal conjugate
OCobstetrical conjugate
bisp.bispinous diameter (interspinous diameter)
Ant. Sag.anterior sagittal diameter
Post. Sag.posterior sagittal diameter
AP Danteroposterior diameter
Trans Dtransverse diameter
6F#6 French Catheter (cath)

Medical Abbreviations-Amino Acids

A or Ala – alanine

C or Cys – cysteine

D or Asp – aspartic acid

E or Glu – glutamic acid

F or Phe – phenylalanine

H or His – histidine

I or Ile – isoleucine

K or Lys – lysine

L or Leu – leucine

M or Met – methionine

N or Asn – asparagine

O or Pyl – pyrrolysine

P or Pro – proline

Q or Gln – glutamine

R or Arg – arginine

S or Ser – serine

T or Thr – threonine

U or Sec – selenocysteine

V or Val – valine

W or Trp – tryptophan

Y or Tyr – tyrosine

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