Medical terminology is the basis of all medical careers. If you want to start a medical transcription career, you need a thorough understanding of medical terminology to succeed. It’s the starting point for any career in the medical field. Doctors, pharmacists, nurses, technicians and transcriptionist all must master medical terminology in order to succeed in their profession.
Medical terminology can be defined as an industry-specific vocabulary for accurately describing the human body and associated conditions, procedures and diagnoses. It involves three basic parts: root words, prefixes, and suffixes. The root word is a term derived from a source language, such as Greek or Latin, and usually describes a body part. It is the main, or middle, part of the word. The prefix is an affix that is added to the front of the root word. It is used to modify the word’s meaning and give additional information about the medical term, such as location, number or time. The suffix is an affix that is added to the end of a word. It is also used to add meaning to the word, such as condition, process, or procedure. Put together, the root word, prefix and suffix create a specific medical term.
In a medical transcription or other medical-related career, the deciphering process is a vital part of understanding the medical term. It usually requires practice on your part to effectively and accurately form and decipher medical terms. To understand a medical term, you need to break down the word and look at its component parts: root word, prefix and suffix. By evaluating them one-by-one, you can learn each meaning and then put them together for full comprehension.
Understanding medical terminology is fundamental to accurately performing a medical transcription career – think of it as a stepping stone to reach your career goal. Without a complete understanding, you would not be able to accurately spell or use medical terminology in your transcriptions. All medical professionals consult their medical dictionaries on a regular basis – add a handy medical dictionary to your reference library. Installing a medical and pharmacological spell checker to augment your word processor will save time and increase productivity. If you transcribe certain specialties there are “Word Books” that contain words that are specific to those specialties.
Your thorough knowledge of root words, prefixes and suffixes will set you on the path to a successful career.