Medical Terminology For Dummies
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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)

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Beverley Henderson, CMT-R, HRT, has more than 40 years of experience in medical terminology and transcription as both an educator and manager. Jennifer L. Dorsey, PhD, has coauthored, revised, and ghostwritten books in the medical, business, and personal growth categories for more than 20 years.

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