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"Decoding Medical Terminology: A Guide to Understanding Common Suffixes in Medicine"

Medical terminology can be overwhelming, with unfamiliar words, complex phrases, and confusing abbreviations. However, understanding medical terminology is essential for healthcare professionals, as it helps to accurately describe, diagnose, and treat medical conditions. Many medical terms have roots, prefixes, and suffixes, and understanding these components can help make sense of the meaning behind the terms. In this blog, we will focus on common medical suffixes and their meanings, including how they can be used to describe medical conditions, anatomical structures, and medical procedures. By the end of this blog, you will have a better understanding of medical terminology and feel more confident in your ability to communicate effectively with other healthcare professionals. So, let's dive into the world of medical suffixes and explore how they can help us better understand the complex language of medicine.






COMMON SUFFIXES

​SUFFIX

MEANING

​EXAMPLE OF MEDICAL TERM

​-ac

​Pertaining to

​Cardiac

​-blast, -blasto, -blastic

​Bud; Germ

​Myeloblast

​-cyte, -cytic

​Cell

​Thrombocyte

​-dynia

​Pain; Swelling

​Thoracodynia

​-eal, -ial

​Pertaining to

​Esophageal

​-ectasis

​Expansion; Dilation

​Atelectasis

​-emia

​Blood condition

Anemia

-ia

​Condition

​Hemophilia

​-iasis

​Condition; Formation of

​Psoriasis

​-ism

​Condition

​Hypothyroidism

​-ites, -itis

​Inflammation

​Arthritis

​-ity

​Pertaining to

​Immunity

​-ium

​Structure or tissue

​Epithelium

​-lysis, -lytic

​Breakdown; Destruction

​Osteolytic

​-malacia

​Softening

​Osteomalacia

​-megaly

​Enlargement

​Acromegaly

​-oid

​Resembling

​Arachnoid trabeculae

​-oma

​Tumor

​Angiosarcoma

​-osis

​Condition; Usually abnormal

​Endometriosis

​-ous

​Pertaining to

​Aqueous

​-pathy

​Disease

​Lymphadenopathy

​-penia

​Deficiency; Lack of

​Thrombocytopenia

​-phagia, -phagy

​Eating; Swallowing

​Dysphagia

​-phasia

​Speech

​Aphasia

-plasia, -plastic

​Growth

​Aphasia

​-plegia

​Paralysis

​Hemiplegia

​-pnea

​Breathing

​Sleep apnea

​-poiesis

​Production

​Hemopoiesis

​-ptosis

​Falling; Dropping

​Apotosis

​-rrhage, -rrhagic

​Bleeding

​Hemorrhage

​-rrhea

​Flow or discharge

​Diarrhea

​-sclerosis

​Hardening

​Arteriosclerosis

PROCEDURE SUFFIXES

​SUFFIX

​MEANING

EXAMPLE OF MEDICAL TERMS

​-centesis

​Surgical puncture to remove fluid

​Thoracentesis

​-desis

​Surgical binding

​Pleurodesis

​-ectomy

​Cut out; Removal

​Mastectomy

​-gram

​Record; Picture

​Electrocardiogram

​-graph

​Instrument used to create a record

​Electrocardiograph

​-graphy

​To record or take a picture

​Electrocardiography

​-meter

​Device used for measuring

​Sphygmomanometer

​-opsy

​Visual examination

​Biopsy

​-ostomy

​Opening

​Colostomy

​-otomy

​Incision

​Laparotomy

​-pexy

​Surgical fixation

​Oophoropexy

​-plasty

​Surgical reconstruction

​Vertbroplasty

​-scope

​For examining

​Endoscope

​-scopy

​Examine

​Endoscopy

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