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2012-10-08 22:31:15
Medical Terminology Prefixes

Medical Terminology Prefixes
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  1. A, AN
    “A” or ”An” means no, not, or without.  

    For example, atrophy is the partial or complete wasting away of a part of the body.
  2. ANTE
    ANTE means in front of (as a position) or before (as in time).  

    For example, anterior placenta refers to a placenta that is located at the front of the uterus; antefebrile means preceding a fever.
  3. ANTI
    ANTI means against.  

    For example, an antibiotic kills or inhibits the growth of bacteria and an anticoagulant is a substance that stops blood from clotting.
  4. BI
    BI means two or double.  

    For example, bilateral relates to or affects both sides.
    CIRCUM means around. 

    For example, circumvascular means to be located around a blood vessel.
  6. CO, COM, CON
    Co, Com, or Con means with or together.  

    For example,coagulate means to change from a liquid state to a solid or gel; Compress is a soft cloth pad used to  provide pressure or to supply moisture, cold, heat, or medication.
    CONTRA means against.  

    For example, a contraindication is a condition that makes a particular treatment or procedure inadvisable.
  8. DIA
    DIA means through.

    For example, diathermy is the elevation of temperature within the tissues produced through high frequency current, ultrasonic waves, or microwave radiation.
  9. DYS
    DYS refers to pain or difficult.

    For example, dysphagia means difficulty in swallowing.
  10. EC, EX
    Ec and Ex mean out of or out from.

    For example, excision means to cut out or remove surgically; an ectopic pregnancy develops outside of the uterus.
  11. ENDO
    Endo means within. 

    For example, Endoscopy is a procedure that is used to visually examine your upper digestive system with a tiny camera on the end of a long flexible tube.
  12. EPI
    EPI means on or upon.

    For example, epigastric refers to the upper central region of the abdomen.
  13. EXTRA
    EXTRA means outside of.

    For example, extracellular fluid refers to body fluid that is outside of cells.
  14. HEMI, SEMI
    HEMI and SEMI means half.

    For example, hemicolectomy is a surgical procedure that removes the right or left side of the colon.
  15. HYPER
    HYPER means above normal.

    For example, hypertension is a chronic medical condition in which the blood pressure is elevated.
  16. HYPO
    HYPO means below normal in position or condition.

    For example, hypoglycemia is a condition of low blood sugar.
  17. INTER
    INTER means between.

    For example, Intercostals are muscles that are located between the ribs.
  18. INTRA
    INTRA means within.

    For example, intravenous means within a vein.
  19. IPSI
    IPSI means self or same. 

    For example, ipsilateral means on the same side.
  20. MONO
    MONO means one. 

    For example, Monopolar refers to having a single pole.
  21. NEO
    NEO means new.

    For example, neonatal refers to the first four weeks after birth.
  22. PARA
    PARA means beside or near.

    For example, parathyroid refers to glands that are located behind the thyroid gland.
  23. PER
    PER means through.

    For example, perforation is an abnormal opening in a hollow organ or viscus, as one made by rupture or injury.
  24. PERI
    PERI means around.

    For example, pericardium is a fluid filled sac that surrounds the heart and the proximal ends of the aorta, vena cava, and the pulmonary artery.
  25. POLY
    POLY means many.

    For example, polyposis refers to the formation of numerous polyps.
  26. POST
    POST means behind (in relation to position) or after (in relation to time).

    For example, posterior means directed toward or situated at the back; postoperative refers to procedures done after a surgical operation.
  27. PRE
    PRE means in front of (in relation to position) or before (in relation to time).

    For example, Prepyloric means just proximal to the pylorus; prenatal means preceding birth (as in prenatal vitamins).
  28. RE
    RE means back or again.

    For example, retraction means to hold back or restrain parts of organs that have been intentionally displaced away from the operative site.
  29. RETRO
    RETRO means behind (in relation to position) or backward.

    For example, retropubic means behind the pubic bone and retrograde amnesia means that the patient cannot remember events that occurred before a traumatic event.
  30. SUB
    SUB means below or beneath.

    For example, subdural hematoma is blood located beneath the dura mater in the brain.
    Super and SUPRA mean above (as in position) and beyond.

    For example, superficial means being situated near the surface and suprapubic means above the public bone.
  32. TRANS
    TRANS means across or by way of.

    For example, transurethral refers to a procedure that is performed through or by way of the urethra.
  33. TRI
    TRI means three.

    For example, trimester is a period of three months.