Glossary of Medical Terms, Abbreviations & Symbols
Dutch-English, French-English, German-English


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R = 1. Recipe = "nimm"; "take" (instruction at top of medical prescription); 2. resistance ("R factors) (pharm.); 3. respiratory exchange ratio (rmed.) / RA = 1. réserve alcaline = alkaline reserve; 2. rheumatoid arthritis / RAA = rhumatisme articulaire aïgu = rheumatic fever / rabique = (of, pertaining to) rabies; rabic (used in e.g. "anti-rabic vaccine", but "anti-rabies vaccine" is more usual. NB not rabid = enragé) / raccordement pleural = pleural tag (rmed.) / racémeux = racemose / Rachenmandel = adenoid tonsil; pharyngeal tonsil / rachitisme = rickets / RACS = respiration, activité circulatoire spontané, see ROSC / RADAR = Royal Association for Disability and Rehabilitation (UK) / (Frei-)Radikalfänger = (free) radical scavenger / radio-(prefix) often = radiation-induced / radioexposition = radiation exposure; irradiation / radiographe = radiographer; X-ray technician / radiographie = radiograph; X-ray; film / radiologiste = radiologist (specialist physician) / radioscopie = fluoroscopy / radiothérapie guidée par l’image, see IGRT / poumon radiothérapique; poumon radique = irradiation pneumonitis  /  ragade = crack (lip, nipple) / râle, rale see adventitious breath sounds / ramolissement = softening; malacia / rampe inspiratoire = ramp, slope (rmed.) / rançon cicatricielle = (visible) scarring (surg.) / Randspalt = marginal breakdown (dentistry) / randständig = peripheral / rangée distale = distal row (hand bones) / Ranvier-Schnürringe = Ranvier's constrictions; nodes of Ranvier (nerve fibres) / RAO = right anterior oblique (view) (rad.) / RAPD = Random Amplification of Polymorphic DNA / dose de rappel; injection de rappel = booster (dose); revaccination / rapport ventilation perfusion = ventilation-perfusion relationship; ventilation-perfusion ratio (rmed.) / rapprocheur de côtes = rib approximator (surg.) / Rari = Rachenring = (Waldeyer's) tonsillar ring / RAS = 1. rien à signaler, see NAD; 2. radioallergosorbent (allergy testing) / rasend = splitting (headache) / Raspatorium = periosteal elevator (surg.) / Rasselgeräusch = rale, see adventitious breath sounds / RAST = radioallergosorbent test / rate = spleen (as in spleen phosphodiesterase; could also be a female rat!) / Räudemilbe = mange mite (vet.) / Raumforderung = mass (as of tumour extending into a body cavity) / Rausch = (alcohol or drugs) intoxication; (drugs) "high"; "rush"; "trip" / Rauschbrand = blackleg; symptomatic anthrax (vet.) / Rauschdrogen; Rauschgifte; Rauschmittel = (usually illegal) drugs; narcotics; psychoactive substances. If including e.g. alcohol (= a Genussmittel), or laughing gas (as anaesthetic), best to say "intoxicants".) / Rautenhirn see rhombencephalon / "rauwe keel" = "sore throat" / RAV = Rous associated virus / RAW = airway resistance (rmed.) / rayon = ray (heat or light); ray (all the bones making up one digital unit) / médécine des rayonnements = radiology / RBC = red blood cells; red blood cell count / RBE = relative biological effectiveness (rad.) / RBK = rechter bovenkwab = upper right lobe (lung) / rBST = recombined bovine somatropin / RBW = relative biologische Wirksamkeit see RBE / RC = 1.  residual capacity, see FRC (rmed.); 2. rebord costal = costal margin; RC haut = upper costal margin; RC bas = lower costal margin (anat.) / RCE = relative cloning efficiency (cells) / RCIU = retard de croissance intrautérin see IUGR / RCMI = radiothérapie conformationnelle avec modulation d'intensité, see IMRT / RCR = réanimation cardiorespiratoire see CPR / RCT = randomised controlled trial / RCUH = recto-colite ulcéro-hémorragique = ulcerative colitis / RDW = red cell distribution width / réaction immunautaire = immunoreaction / réadaptation = rehabilitation / Syndrom reaktionsloser Wachheit = unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (suggested as perferable term for PVS) / réanimation = resuscitation (as hospital unit, often combined with soins intensifs - intensive care) / ambulance de réanimation = resuscitation ambulance (crewed by trained paramedics) / rebord = border (anat.) / récepteur d'étirement pulmonaire = pulmonary stretch receptor (PSR) / Recht auf Wissen; Recht auf Nicht-Wissen = right to know; right not to know (bioethics) / rechte darm = rectum / rechterharthelf = the right heart / Rechtsmediziner = forensic pathologist / rechute = relapse (return of symptoms during cure) / récidive = recurrence (new and separate occurrence of symptoms after a remission) / RCJ = ration calorique journalière see DCI / réclinaison = retraction (surg.) / Recofixansatz = spring-loaded plunger assembly (syringe) / recoupes saines = margins clear (i.e. margins of surgical incision are tumour-free) (oncology) / recrudescence = recrudescence (return of symptoms after temporary abatement (of days or weeks): differs from relapse where the interval is weeks or months) / recto-colite ulcéro-hémorragique = ulcerative colitis / Recueil international de la législation en matière de santé = International Digest of Health Legislation (WHO) / red flag (defined): early warning signs and indicators of a medical condition / Redondrainage = Redon drain (surg./wounds) / redresser = reset; realign (fractured bone) / reductiedeling = meiosis (cells) / réduction = reduction (of fracture) / rééducation = rehabilitation; occupational therapy / reentry tachycardia (card.) / réfection = (surgical) repair; reconstruction / références médicales opposables = mandatory practice guidelines (BMJ article on French system) / référent = specialist / Referenzwert see Sollwert / refractory period (nervous system) / Regenbogenhaut = iris (eye) / regenboogvlies = iris (eye) / régime = regimen (diet and/or exercise); diet / registre = registry / réglages = settings (ventilator e.g.) / femme réglée = woman of childbearing age / Règlement Sanitaire International = International Health Regulations / règles = menstrual period; menstruation (gyn.) / reguliere geneeskunde = conventional medicine; "allopathy" (as opposed e.g. to homeopathic medicine) / "Rehabilitation vor Rente" = "rehabilitation before pension" (accident insurance, principle enshrined in German law) / Reibtest mit Stripping = abrasion and tape-stripping (allergies) / reincultuur = pure culture (microbiol.) / rein de choc = crush kidney / rein en fer à cheval = horsehoe kidney / rein flottant = floating kidney; hypermobile kidney; wandering kidney / rein en galette = pancake kidney / rein ptosé see rein flottant / reitende Aorte = overriding aorta / Reiterbein = bowleg; genu varum / REITOX = Réseau européen d'information sur les Toxicomanies = European Information Network on Drugs and Drug Addiction (EU, use FR acronym) / Reiz = 1. stimulus; 2. irritant / kortikale Reizantworten = cortical evoked potentials, responses (ECG) / Reize und Stimuli = triggers and stimuli / Reizepilepsie = reflect epilepsy; startle epilepsy (triggered by strobe lights, sudden noise etc) / Reizleitung = conduction (nerves) / reizlos = clean (e.g. "the wound healed cleanly") / rekanalisatie = recanalization (blood vessels) / Rekurrenzfieber see Rückfallfieber / relative Sekundenkapazität = (relative) FEV1 (FEV1/FVC x 100, see FEV1 / releveur = levator (muscle) / rem = roentgen equivalent, man (radiation dose unit, superseded by the Sievert. 1 Sv = 100 rem) / REM = 1. rapid eye movement (sleep); 2. return electrode monitoring (electrosurg.; TM name of firm Valleylab) / remgeld see ticket modérateur / remnographie see MRI / remodelage osseux = bone turnover; bone remodelling / renflé = enlarged (organ, conduit) / renforcer; renfort = buttress (sutures) / renine; rénine = renin / rennine = chymosin; rennin; (culinary) rennet (NB not to be confused with renin) / Rentenneurose = compensation neurosis / reo = respiratory orphan (reovirus) / rep = roentgen equivalent, physical (radiation dose unit, superseded by the rad, obsolete) / chirurgie réparatrice = reconstructive surgery / point de répère = landmark; measure point (craniometry e.g.) / repiquages successifs = serial passages (culture; microbiol.) / repli = fold (skin) / reponeren = reduce (hernia, fracture) / reponibel = reducible (hernia, fracture) / reproduktionstoxische Wirkung = reproductive toxicity / reprotoxique; reprotoxisch = toxic to reproduction, reprotoxic (defined: may impair fertility or harm the unborn child; more modern and broader definition than "teratogenic", which covered only the developing foetus) / RES = reticuloendothelial system; reticulo-endotheliale systeem; Retikulo-endotheliales System / en réseau = reticular (lung opacity) (rad./rmed.) / résécabilité = operability; resectability / réséquer = resect (surg.) / réserve alcaline = alkaline reserve / Residualvolumen = residual volume, see RV (rmed.) / résistance à l'écoulement = flow resistance (rmed.) / fil de suture résorbable = absorbable (surgical) suture; dissolving stitch / résorption; Resorption: in English, only substances and tissues produced within the body itself are "resorbed" (broken down and recycled); substances introduced into the body are "absorbed" (drugs, foods) / respiration sifflante = wheeze; wheezing, see adventitious breath sounds / mode respiratoire = breathing pattern; respiratory pattern / ressaut = palpable click (Ortolani's sign) / ressort see endoprothèse / restrictif; restriktiv = restrictive (lung disease) / résultat = 1. result, findings (of test); 2. outcome (of course of treatment) / retard = controlled-release; slow-release (pharm.) / Retention = retention (dust in lungs) / rétiniens = retinal cones (ophth.) / Retinsäure = retinoic acid; vitamin A acid / Retothel = retothelium / contrôle en retour; rétrocontrôle = feedback (endocrin.) / retour veineux = venous return / rétraction = 1. adhesions (scar); 2. recoil (rmed., of lung) / Retraktion = recoil (rmed., of lung) / rétréci = narrowed; stenosed / Rettungssanitär = paramedic / reukzenuw = olfactory nerve / revalidatie = rehabilitation / révolution cardiaque = cardiac cycle / rezeptpflichtig = prescription-only; requiring a doctor's prescription (cf. "prescription medicines") / RF = 1. respiratory frequency; breathing frequency (number of respiratory cycles, or operations of breathing in and out, per minute; ± 10-14 in a healthy resting subject); 2. reumafactor; Rheumafaktor = rheumatoid factor / RFLP = Restriktionslängenpolymorphismus; polymorphisme de longueur des fragments de restriction = restriction fragment length polymorphism (test for TB e.g.) / Rh = Rhesus factor (blood): NB if (in some languages) a distinction is made between Rh and rh, then Rh is positive, with D factor, and rh is negative, without factor D / rhinopharynx see nasopharynx / rhombencéphalerhombencephalon; hindbrain / rhonchopathie chronique = (chronic) snoring / rhonchus; rhonchi see adventitious breath sounds / rhume de cerveau see rhume simple / rhume des foins = hayfever; seasonal allergic rhinitis / rhume simple = common cold; head cold / rHWI = rezidivierende Harnwegsinfektion = recurrent UTI / RIA = radioimmunoassay / richtlaser = aiming beam; pilot laser / Richtwert = guide value / Richtwertkurve = boundary of the caution zone (OSH; vibration) / ricinusolie = castor oil (pharm.) / signe du rideau (de Vernet) see Kulissenphänomen 1. / Riechhirn = rhinencephalon; olfactory brain; smell brain / RIF = right iliac fossa / rinçage à l'azote = nitrogen washout (test); Fowler's test (rmed.) / Rinderbandwurm = beef tapeworm; Taenia saginata / Rinderwahn; Rinderwahnsinn, see BSE / Ringknorpel = cricoid cartilage; annular cartilage; cartilago cricoidea / Ringmesser = adenotome (surg.) / Ringversuch = cooperative study, round robin study (samples of same substance are sent round to a number of laboratories for analysis) / rINN = recommended International Nonproprietary Names (WHO) / Rippenfell = parietal pleura (more specifically the costal pleura) / Rippenfellvereiterung = pleural abscess / RIPT = repeat insult patch test / Rist = arch (foot) / ritmestoornis = arrhythmia (card.) / RIVA = ramus interventricularis anterior, see LAD / RK = Residualkapazität; Residualluftkapazität = residual capacity (RC), see FRC (rmed.) / RM = rétrécissement mitral = mitral stenosis (card.) / RMN = résonance magnétique nucléaire, see MRI / RMSF = Rocky Mountain spotted fever / RMV = respiratory minute volume, see MV / Rna = nasal airway resistance (rmed.) / RNA = ribonucleic acid / RNP = ribonucléoprotéide; ribonucleoprotein / RNS = Ribonucleinsäure see RNA / rocher see portion pétreuse / rodehond = rubelle; German measles / rode vlag see red flag / roes see Rausch / ROI = region of interest / Rollhügel = trochanter / Rollkur; rollkuur = alternative medicine therapy in which patient drinks e.g. herbal tea and then, lying down, rolls over at intervals on to their other side..; concept appears unknown in English-speaking world / Rollrandampulle = rolled edge ampoule / Röhrenknochen = long bone; cylindrical bone / rond de tête = headring; "doughnut"  (operating/imaging table accessory) / Röntgen, Wilhelm Konrad (1845-1923): inventor of X-rays / röntgenologie = radiography / röntgenopak = radio-opaque; X-ray-opaque (rad.) / Röntgensimulation = X-ray simulation (radiotherapy) / Röntgenzeichen = radiographic change / roodvonk = scarlet fever; scarlatina / roofwants = assassin bug (Reduviidae) / ROR = rougeole, oreillons, rubéole see MMR / Ros = oscillation resistance (rmed.) / ROS = reactive oxygen species; free oxygen radicals / ROSC = return of spontaneous circulation (card.) / rosée sanglante = pinpoint bleeding; punctate bleeding (on debrided or cut tissue surface, Auspitz's sign in psoriasis) / Rotatorenmanschette = rotator cuff (shoulder) / rote Flagge see red flag / Röteln see rodehond / Rotlauf = swine erysipelas; erysipeloid; diamond skin disease (Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae) (vet.) / rotsbeen = petrous bone / rotule = patella / Rotz = glanders; malleus (disease of horses, caused by Pseudomonas mallei); (chronic form) farcy (vet.) / rougeole = measles / rouget du porc see Rotlauf / tumeur royale = (in neurofibromatosis) a "large neurofibroma" (may be a plexiform neurofibroma or collection of mollusca fibrosa) / rozenkrans = rachitic beads; beading of the ribs; "rickety rosary" / Rp = "Recipe", see R / RP = respirable particulates (rmed.) / RPE = 1. rating of perceived exertion (OSH); 2. résonance paramagnétique électronique (spectroscopy), see ESR; 3. respiratory protective equipment / RPL = radiophotoluminescent (dosemeter)/ RPM = rupture prematurée des membranes = premature rupture of the membranes (obst.) / RPP = rate-pressure product (blood pressure) / RQ = respiratoir quotiënt; respiratory quotient (ratio of O2 supplied to tissues : CO2 produced, in aerobic and anaerobic metabolism) / RR = 1. relative risk, contrast overall risk (tox.); 2. respiratory rate (normally 10-14 breaths/minute) 3. Riva-Rocci (used in German to mean "blood pressure", named after inventor of the modern cuff-based sphygmomanometer) / R2R = recognition to reperfusion (time) (cardiol.) / RRO see ROR / RRR = 1. regular rate and rhythm (card.);2. relative risk ratio/ RSI = repetitive strain injury / RSP = respirable particulates (rmed.) / RSV = 1. respiratory syncytial virus; 2. Rous sarcoma virus / RT = residence time (tox.) / RTA = road traffic accident (emed.) / Rtc = reticulocyte / RTL = radiothermoluminescent (dosemeter) / RT-PCR = reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (test) / RTUP = résection endoscopique transurétale de la prostate (other variants in French are REUP, RUP and RTU) = TURP / rubéole = German measles; rubella / rückbildbar = reversible / Rückbildung = regression / Rückenmark = spinal medulla / Rückfallfieber = relapsing fever (Borrelia) / rückgängig machen = reverse (effect) / Rückgrat see Wirbelsäule / Rückkoppelung = feedback (hormonal control) / ruggengraat see Rückgrat / ruggenmerg see Rückenmark / ruggenmergskanaal see wervelkanaal / ruggenmergstering = tabes dorsalis (syphilis) / ruggenmergsvocht = cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) / ruggenmergwortels = spinal nerve roots / rugine = periosteal elevator (surg.) / rugosité = roughened area (bone); ruga; rugosity / Ruheatmung = quiet breathing / Ruhestoffwechsel = basal metabolism / Ruhr = dysentery / Rumpf = trunk (body minus head and limbs) / Rundbuckel = hump back; hunchback; abnormal kyphosis (spine) / runderlintworm see Rinderbandwurm / Rundherd = (pulmonary) nodule (rad./rmed.) / Rundinfiltrat = nodular infiltrate (rad./rmed.) / rundlich = rounded (lung opacity) (rad./rmed.) / Ruptur = tear (muscle, tendon) / Rus = resistance of upstream airway segment (rmed.) / rut = oestrus; "heat" (vet.) / RV = 1. reserve volume, see ERV; IRV (rmed.); 2. residual volume; Residualvolumen (volume of gas left in lung at the end of a maximal unhurried expiration; up to age 30 = 20-25% of total lung capacity, or 1500-1800 ml) (rmed.); 3. right ventricle / RVH = right ventricular hypertrophy (card.) / RVI = right ventricular insufficiency / RVO = Reichsversicherungs-Ordnungs(-Kasse) (D) / RVU = récessus vésico-utérin = vesicouterine pouch, uterovesical pouch, excavatio vesicouterina (gyn.) / Rx = treatment; prescription / RxP (FR) see CXR


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