Abbreviations, etc.

As requested by the Queen.  There are terms I use sometimes that need some ‘splaining.

Some are medical terms, probably out of date by now – most of which I know because I had to learn them to decipher doctor scribble way back in the day (1990s) of handwritten everything (do they still handwrite and transcribe all orders?).  Also, my mother used the abbreviations as short hand in notes to us when we were growing up. I told you, they tried to make me one of them. Some are idiosyncratic terms coined by smaller groups, sometimes as small as one (me).

Here’s some guidance to them.

Idiosyncratic (and not) Terms and Abbreviations I use:

ABx = antibiotics.  I took a lot of them when I was being treated for Lyme Disease.

Babysniffer = a person (most often female) who is crazed for babies and all things baby related.  They obsess on it.  They seem to sniff out babies from miles away.  They are creepy in that they tend to say things like “Oooh, he’s so cute I just want to gobble him all up!”  See Dot from Raising Arizona.  Usage note:  A babysniffer is not the same as someone normal who wants to have kids or someone who expresses a non-pathological delight in a baby.

B.A.T.H. or “BATH” = Big Ass Teaching Hospital.
BI-BATH = Best Itty Big Ass Teaching Hospital. One of the orphans of the Big Northeastern City’s mega-BATH conglomerate, affiliated with Ye Olde New England University Across the River.

BBM = Big Bad Migraine.  The kind with all the trimmings – photosensitivity/photophobia, hyperacusis and phonophobia (I swear the sound of bubbles in an open soda can will send me over the edge when I have this), nausea, aura with a scintillating scotoma.

BCPs = birth control pills.

CMD = crazy making drug.  E.g. “My doctor put me on Zonisamide for my migraines, I looked it up and it says it can make people suicidal.  That’s one hell of a CMD.”

Dx = diagnosis.

F.A.S.T. = public health stroke awareness acronym for stroke assessment – Face, Arms, Speech, Time.

G.P. or GP = Gastroparesis. When your stomach (gastro) don’t move right (paresis). Leads to all sorts of feeling bad, malnutrition. All around sucky. There are several types based on presumed or actual cause, my favorite being “idiopathic”, which if observation is correct means “I, your doctor, am too much of an idiot to care why your gastro is paretic, so fuck it, let’s just say it’s idiopathic!”

‘HO = House officer (it may come up), but when said with that certain inflection, person who doesn’t answer his/her 80,000th page (this time it really is for something important, really).

Hx = history.

Judy = As always, with the caveat that I’m sure there are many people out there named Judy who are not like this.  However, I have encountered just one too many Judies in my lifetime – as either coworkers or office staff I need to interact with and who all strangely share a certain set of ungodly frustrating features which include

  • slow processing speed and limited verbal comprehension ability (which I can handle if the adult who has these traits is aware of them and has developed skills to compensate…I have a hard time with people whose apparent challenges are intrusive, pervasive, and yet exceptionally opaque to them).
  • very stereotypically feminine attitudes and manners including what I call “man pandering”.
  • a tendency to be easily overwhelmed by the mundane and routine tasks of their jobs, again in that oddly opaque way where they THINK they are doing a bang up job but their coworkers are ready to flog them for their ineptitude.

Manses = term for moody, dreary, and sometimes outright cranky phase of my husband’s mood cycle.

Minipause or mini-pause = Possible reason for my night sweats and BBM in the weeks after my hysterectomy.

PI = primary investigator or principal investigator.  MD/PhD or just plain ol’ PhD.  A very well educated but not usually well socialized person who has managed to get a grant to do something that they (probably used to) love.  This person’s job is to manage or oversee management of a research project.  When used in combination with B.A.T.H., this person could reasonably be called “research overlord” and possibly should be since it is likely how s/he thinks of her/himself.

Purulent = the adjectival form of puss.

PVCs (you can look them up below too) = premature ventricular contraction/complex.  It’s described as feeling like your heart “skipped a beat”.  The ones I had that wouldn’t go away, those felt more like my heart was going in reverse for a good three or four “beats”.  Like sucking instead of pumping.  Not painful (for me) but uncomfortable and makes you overly aware of your heartbeat.  Until they go away and you stop thinking about them totally.  Until they come back.

TBI = Traumatic Brain Injury

more as they come up….

General References:

Medical Abbreviations

Prescription Abbreviations

NIH Medical Dictionary

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