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The root of a word is its main part and core meaning. These common medical root words give you a general idea of what you’re dealing with or specify a body part.

  • Abdomin/o: Abdomen

  • Aden/o: Gland

  • Anter/o: Front

  • Arteri/o: Artery

  • Audi/o: Hearing

  • Bio: Life

  • Brachi/o: Arm

  • Bronch/i, bronch/o: Bronchus

  • Carcin/o: Cancer

  • Cardi/o: Heart

  • Col/o: Colon

  • Cyt/o: Cell

  • Derm/a, derm/o, dermat/o: Skin

  • Dors/i, dors/o: Back or posterior

  • Encephal/o: Brain

  • Gastr/o: Stomach

  • Gynec/o: Female

  • Hemat/o: Bl ood

  • Hist/o, histi/o: Tissue

  • Intestin/o: Intestine

  • Lapar/o: Abdomen, loin or flank

  • Lymph/o: Lymph vessels

  • My/o: Muscle

  • Neur/o: Nerve

  • Ocul/o: Eye

  • Ophthalm/o: Eyes

  • Optic/o, opt/o: Seeing, sight

  • Or/o: Mouth

  • Ot/o: Ear

  • Path/o: Disease

  • Pharmac/o: Drug

  • Pulmon/o: Lungs

  • Sept/o: Infection

  • Thorac/o: Chest/thorax

  • Thyr/o: Thyroid gland

  • Trachel/o: Neck or necklike

  • Trich/o: Hair or hairlike

  • Ventr/i, ventr/o: Front of body

  • Viscer/o: Viscera (internal organs)

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Medical Terminology For Dummies Cheat Sheet


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