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Medical Word Elements
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Element Meaning
A  
a- lacking, without, negation; absence; absence of; not
ab- not
ab/s- away from
-able describes a capacity; what can be done or accomplished
aborto to miscarry
ad- toward, near
adeno pertaining to the adrenal glands
adren/o pertaining to the adrenal glands
adreno of or pertaining to the endocrine system
adrenal/o pertaining to the adrenal glands
-ae plural form
aer/i/o air
-age suffix that changes a verb to a noun
-al refers to a characteristic; related to
albu- white
algesi pain
-algia pain
-algesia pain or sensitivity
ambul- to move about
amni/o the thin, transparent sac holding a fetus in utero
ampl- breadth or width
an- lacking, without, negation; absence; absence of; not
ana- upward, backward
andr/o/os male
angio- vessel
ante- before, prior
anter/o front, anterior, ahead of, before, or in front of
anti- against
antr cavity
aort/o aorta
append appendix
-ar referring to
arch/e/i- original, first, beginning
-aris pertaining to
arteri/a/o artery
arteriol/o arteriole; small artery
arthr of or pertaining to the skeletal system
arthr/o joint
-ase enzyme
-asthenia loss of strength
-ate action, use, possession, having the form of, undergo a process
ather/o fatty plaque or patch
-ation indicating an action, process, state, condition, or result
aud/i hear
audi/it hearing
auto- self
azo/t- nitrogenous waste or compounds
B  
balan/o penis
baro- weight or pressure (atmospheric)
bas step
bi- two, twice, or double
bio life
-blast newly created cell, immature cell, embryonic cell, germ cell
botul botulinum, a neotoxin
brach- short, small, or brief
brady- slow rate of
brevis- short, small, or brief
brochiol/o/io air passage
bronch/i/io/o windpipe
bucco/o check
C  
carcin/o cancer
cardi/io/iolog heart; of or pertaining to the circulatory system
caud/o lower; below other structures or parts; pertaining to the tail of the tail end
cent/i one hundredth
-centesis puncture or aspirate
cephalo- cranium
cerebr/o brain
cerebro of or pertaining to the nervous system
cervic/o neck
chemo drug
chlor/chloro- green
cholangi/o bile duct
cholecyst/o gallbladder
choledoch/o bile duct
chron/o over a long period of time
circ to go around as in a circuit
circum surrounding, around
cirrho- orange-yellow; reddish-yellow
-clasia break, breaking or crushing
-clast to break
clastic broken or divided into pieces
calvicul/o related to the clavicle
clini medical practice
clit- clitoris
co- with
co/n- together
coagul congealing or solidifying
cocc berry
col/o colon
colp/o vagina
colon/o colon
concha shell or shell-shaped
consc aware
contra- opposite or against
cortico cortex; outer surface of an organ or structure
cran head
crin- to secrete
cutane/o both the epidermis and dermis layers of the skin tissue
cyano- blue
cycl/e/o circle, cycle
cyst/o/i bladder
cyt/o cell, of or pertaining to the integumentary system
D  
de- down, away, or from
deca- ten
deci- one tenth
demi- one half
dent/o/i teeth
-desis binding
derm/a/o skin, of or pertaining to the integumentary system
dext- right
di- two, twice, or double
dia- across, through
digest/i/o to break down or chemically alter

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