Medical Terminology


>>Hi, everyone. Welcome to the penguin
prof channel. Today I want to talk about how
to approach medical terminology. What I like to call breaking
up which isn’t hard to do. So, the key, of course, is to
take big complicated problems and to break them down into
small more manageable pieces. This is true for language
as well as the rest of life. The problem, of course, as
I’ve mentioned in other videos, is that in science and medicine
we use a lot of terms that come from Greek and Latin roots. So, I highly recommend
that as you master all of these pieces you keep a list. Or better yet get
yourself a dictionary of Greek and Latin roots. And, you know, you just
build your skill set from the bottom up. And it gets easier as you go. I promise. First thing to understand is
that you got to break words down into their component parts. And most medical and science
terms will have a beginning which we call a prefix. A middle which is
the root of the word. And then an ending
which is the suffix. And so usually the prefix and/or
the suffixes is a modifier of the main root of the word. So, you will probably notice,
if you haven’t already, that medical terms
are really long and it’s very daunting
for a lot of people. But the truth is most of
them are very descriptive and they mean something. So, if you can break them down,
it’s not going to be too bad. I mean, when you first
look at these terms, you can just say,
you know, forget it. This is ridiculously long. Or you can just say look,
you know, break them down, and they become more manageable. So, what I want to do in
this video is give you some of the most common of the puzzle
pieces that you will encounter in medical terminology. And, hopefully, give you
a good place to start. So, something you’ll see
every time we talk about bone and the skeletal system is
osteo when we’re talking about cell parts, when we’re
talking about conditions. Things like this slide
shows osteoarthritis. Don’t let this happen
to you by the way. Take care of your joints. You’re going to see this
osteo somewhere in there. Osteocyte, in fact, is
the name of a bone cell. When you see myo or sarco,
that refers to muscle. All different types
of cell structures within muscle you’re going
to see with myo or sarco. For example, you’ll
see the sarcomere. You’ll see the sarcoplasmic
reticulum. You will see myo
fibers or myofibrils. All of those things
relates to muscle. Muscle has a lot of really
specialized structures. And almost all of them
you’re going to see with myo or sarco usually in the prefix. This one you probably
know already. Neuro refers to nerves. A neuron is a nerve cell which
is what you’re looking at here. But there’s a lot
of other terms, of course, that use that root. So, you always know you’re going to be talking about
nerves there. When you see derm, that
refers to the skin. You probably know a lot
of these terms already. The epidermis which is this
section up here at the top. Epi just means on top. There are five layers
of the epidermis. And then beneath the
epidermis is the dermis. The dermal layer which is
what you’re seeing down here. So, derm you probably
have heard of terms like dermatitis for example. Just inflammation of the skin. A dermatologist. Things like that all
relating to the skin. Blood vessels you’re going
to often see the term angio. And you’ve, hopefully,
heard of angioplasty which is basically
the insertion of a — of a little catheter and a
balloon which is inflated in order to create space
inside an occluded vessel. The veins we have veno or
phlebo like a phlebotomist. Phlebotomist is someone who draws blood for
their profession. We see that a lot. Most people know
cardio and the heart. We really don’t know why when you suffer emotional
distress your heart aches. It’s kind of a mystery
of modern medicine. I can tell you that
Tylenol does not help. Things relating to the
nose you’ll often see rhino like rhinoplasty
which is a nose job. And, of course, that’s the root
for the rhinoceros so named because of not so much it’s
big nose but big horns. This term from tympany
refers to things like the tympanic membrane
which is the ear drum. The tympany that’s the
kettle drum in an orchestra. And, of course, the
drum vibrates and creates a particular pitch. And similarly when sound waves
strike the tympanic membrane and cause it to vibrate that
will cause the ear ossicles to vibrate and set up a whole
chain of events which leads to your ability to hear. This one you probably
don’t know. But neph, n-e-p-h,
relates to the kidney. The functional unit of
the kidney is the nephron. This is the actual nephron here. That is how the kidney
is able to filter blood and produce a filtrate which
will eventually be urine. So, here’s some more. Some of these you may know. They’re all pretty common. The skull. The skull, itself, actually
is referred to as the cranium. You’ve probably heard of that. The eye you’ll see things
like ophthalmologist. You’ll see an ocular. The ear is oto, o-t-o. Otoliths. Those are the tiny
little bones in the ear. They’re actually the
smallest bones in the body as I was mentioning earlier. Blood clot. You’ve probably heard
of a thrombosis. That’s fairly commonly used. Liver. You see hepato a lot. Liver cells are called
hepatocytes. You may have heard of hepatitis
which is a disease of the liver. Breast actually you’re going to
see things like mammary glands. I’m sure you’ve heard
of mammography. Large intestine we use
colo as in the colon for the large intestine itself. But you’ll see it in other
things like a colonoscopy. Gastro for the stomach. Ileo for the small intestine. Thoraco for the chest. You — I’m sure — heard of
things like the thoracic wall. The thorax. All the same root. And in the lung,
pneumo or pleuro. I’m sure you’ve heard
of pneumonia. Pleuro you’ll see things
like pleurisy relating to the inflammation
of lung membranes. A lot of terms. Prefixes, especially,
relate to size. Size matters, of course. Macro which means large. Micro which means small. You probably know those. Megalo or megaly means
large or enlarged. Rates. This is really important
to take note because a lot of these prefixes look
very much the same but they mean dramatically
different things. So, for example, if your patient
is hyperthyroidic [phonetic], it means that their
thyroid is overactive. If they are hypothyroidic
[phonetic], it means the thyroid is not
as active as it should be. So, the — the main part
of the word looks the same but if you change that
prefix it means a completely different thing. Tachy and brady referring
to rates as well often in reference to the heart. So, tachycardia, for example, is a resting heart
rate that is too fast. Bradycardia, resting
heart rate that is slow. Colors. We have a lot of
prefixes relating to color. Chlorophyll, for example,
like in plants is green. Leuk is white. You see that in leukocytes. Red, erythro. Erythrocytes, red blood cells. And cyan which is the color blue
like erythrocyanan [phonetic]. Cyanobacteria you may
seen in general biology. Those are the blue green algae. Oh, my goodness. Spend some time with
these directional terms — directional prefixes because
they will mess you up. Sometimes I swear these
little guys are what drive people crazy. Look at this for example. So, endo or intra
both mean within. But look at this difference. Intra versus inter
which means between. So, for example, I
would say intracellular and that means within
a single cell. Right? But what if
I say intercellular? So, that means between cells. It sounds like a
very small difference but it means a dramatically
different idea. So, most people would think
about perhaps intercourse. Yeah, that’s a good one. Which is between people. There — there is no such thing as intracourse [phonetic]
far as I know. Extra refers to outside. You certainly know things
like extraterrestrial. Peri. Peri means around. So, when we talk about something
that is around a structure. Peritoneum for example. That is fairly commonly used
to mean around something. It could even be —
it could be a cell. It could be a whole
sheet of tissue. It could be around an organ. The pericardium, for example, is a membrane surrounding
the entire heart. And then trans. That means across. So, this could be something like
a protein that actually goes across a cell membrane. A transmembrane protein. Or you could be using it to
discuss an actual process. You’re going to see
that as well. But these are little guys that
really make a big difference. Test and procedures. These get used a lot. And it’s really helpful
to know these because you’ll see them
over and over again. Echo as in echocardiogram. Using ultrasonic waves. Electro I’m sure you know. Ectomy is the removal. A gram is a picture. You can talk about a graph. The process of making an image. Making a cut. Using an instrument for
viewing or creating and opening. These are very common. And finally some problems. Dys meaning not working
properly. Mal as a prefix meaning bad. The term malady comes from this. Malaria was a disease
that was thought to be spread through the air. So, literally malaria
means bad air. We now know, of course,
it’s not caused by the air. Emia is referring to some
sort of blood condition. And itis. Anything with
itis is an inflammation. And osis. That’s just a
very, very broadly used term for a condition or disease
as is the suffix pathy. For example, neuropathy is a
very broad term for a disease of the nervous system. So, when you put
it all together, we can take some big complicated
words and break them down. So, here is a three-parter
for you. Hypercholesterolemia. So, when you break it down, you can see that hyper
which means elevated. This refers to, of
course, cholesterol. And emia this is referring
to a condition in the blood. It’s elevated blood cholesterol. Dermatitis. I think I gave that
one away earlier. Derm referring to the skin. And that itis is
the inflammation. So, that’s just an
inflammation of the skin. A colostomy referring
to the colon. And then an actual
opening in the colon. So, some things for you
guys to try on your own. There’s plenty of fun
things to look at. I think that you’ll find
that if you just kind of get over the initial panic of,
wow, these words are long and foreign you just
got to keep going. Keep — keep reading. Keep exposing yourself to them. And trust me. It gets easier. As always, I want to thank you for visiting the
penguin prof channel. Please comment, read,
and subscribe. Join us on the Facebook
page and follow on Twitter. Good luck.

100 thoughts on “Medical Terminology

  1. This helped out a lot I just started medical terminology at school and I literally panic when I seen these words. So thank you for doing this video.

  2. thank you for this! it is very helpful coz I'm applying for medical secretary and I need to learn more about this..coz I was graduated in psychology so im not familiar with this one.thank you you're awesome!

  3. Your videos are wonderful, very friendly and easy to understand. Thank you very much, Penguin Professor! I'm always thankful for what you have done for us thru your inspiring works.

  4. Thank you for making this fun, to the point, and packed with vital information! I'm taking my med term final today and I'm super nervous so YouTube is getting me through!!

  5. If gastro is the stomach, how come the wide calf muscle is called GASTROcnemius? Is it cuz of its stomach/back like shape (it kind of looks like a human upper body with big lats)? Or does gastro simply mean something else here? Thx for the vid btw. Helped a lot.

  6. I'm not English native speaker, I got my GED from USA in English. what do you think it will be hard for me to understand and get my billing and coding certificate if I will study it please? ?Thank you.

  7. Medical Terminology is so easy. Got a 97 in this class. I wish all college classes were structured and easy to grasp like this one.

  8. I'm only 11 and know for sure I want to major in medicine. This is a great start. I may be early but that just means more time to study.

  9. This was really helpful. I'm currently doing a fast-track medical terminology class in uni, and we're prepping for the final. It's been rather overwhelming but your video really helped reenforce the learning.

  10. Great video, really helped a lot, thanks for the upload. 100% subscribing! Think I'll be coming back once the assessments start to double check on different things 🙂

  11. I love your videos! You helped me with Microbiology, Chemistry and now Med Term….appreciate you and all the time and effort you put into your channel!!! Please keep them coming! If you are taking requests 🙂 I would like to see some basic pharmacology (if you dabble in that) and/or more Medical Terminology – I will search your channel to ensure these videos aren't already there…THANK YOU AGAIN!! PS…You have the best speaking/teaching voice eva!

  12. Beautiful voice to learn medical terminology; however, you did not break up the words like neuron, nephron. How are they derived? Second, there is a word intercourse as you described. There can also be a word intra-course meaning within the course, within the course work of study. 5/12/2017

  13. Does -eal as a suffix mean anything in particular? For example on the end of Transesophageal? (Trans+esophag+eal)

  14. Thank you so much!!! I'm about to give up to take some classes but after I watched your video it gave me hope! MANY THANKS TO YOU!!!!!

  15. This was an excellent introduction to medical terminology. It doesn't seem to be a difficult subject to get your head around once you know what the individual parts mean. Made me smile a few times as well as you added your personality. Much appreciated, thank you!

  16. this video was a big help although ive been in the medical field for some watching this video is a big help I wish they had this out when I went to school years ago

  17. I thought this video was great and things were well explained & I really like the way she broke down the words!

  18. Even for someone like me – native speaker of Italian with a solid background in Latin and Greek – this video was very instructive. Simple and to the point. Great!

  19. I'm glad that these videos exist, becuse they allow me to study before classes related to this stuff.

  20. The video is very useful. I am an Asian student so you can imagine how scared I am to attend this class (someone has warned me). I hope to see more videos from you. Especially something meaningful so that I can remember these strange words. thank you!

  21. Thanks for the video. A question: how do we spell the numbers in bone names? e.g: 4th left rib in latin? Os costa "quattuor"? sinister.

  22. I have not done all of these words but I think I’ll study these prefixes and suffixes. My similar study pattern has helped me identify words quickly. What I also do is study one section at the time and not mix modules back and forth. I’m starting college soon and I know it’s not easy, but I’m not afraid to give It my all.

  23. I was in an adn program a while back but this help me more then my professor. We literally had to read for ourselves and note things down usually at the same time while the professor often didn’t do jack carp — was just there to questioning homework or other study activities. Mine as well put YouTube in lectures.

  24. Excelent, didactic and quite motivating video. I liked the principle you stated of breaking things down and finding a good dictionary. Just awesome!

  25. Well done.. Wonderful…video.
    Thank you for becoming a nursing student-i truely honor ur passion.They very much make a difference in my life. Thxu.n thx u
    4 posting. This.
    I am now a pallitive care m.s. patient…
    ~ I was going to college for radiology…
    Many years ago…moons ago…
    And i worked speciality pharmacy … After that.. I think i changed my major.. To everything medical… Chair steeping down. Till i knew. It wasent ment to b

    I very much forced my health… To get my 103% on my final.

    Thank you for posting this.. Its still exactly as i remember. And to be honest its still helpful in my life even though. Im disabled now. And college should be in the wind.. But i still think about it. But in life. We must know if we do all we can. Sometimes. Its out of our hands. Sometimes were ment for some other version of our dreams. For greatness… In some other way…

    P.s.
    Maybe sometimes its just about lifting up whos arounds you. And figuring out how to breathe the next.breath….

    Thank u
    Sincerely
    Divine.

  26. Wow. Very nice video. Thank you. This opened a new world for me. How do you learn to pronounce these big words?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *