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Prescription Lingo

Abbreviations and Meanings of Prescription Wordage

QuestionAnswer
ac Before Meals. -- Sample Time- 7:30 am, 11:30 am, 4:30 pm
pc After Meals. -- Sample Time- 10 am, 2 pm. 6 pm
daily Every Day, Daily
q.d. or qd DO NOT USE!!! every day, daily
bid Twice a day
tid Three times a day
qid Four times a day
qh How many times is this med given? Every Hour. --This med will be given 24 times in one day.
at bedtime At bedtime, hour of sleep. --Sample Time- 10 pm
hs or h.s. DO NOT USE!!! at bed time, hour of sleep
qn Every Night
stat Immediately, Now!
q2h or q2°How many times is this med given? Every 2 hours. --This med will be given 12 times in a 24 hour period.
q4h or q4°How many times is this med given? Every 4 hours. --This med will be given 6 times in a 24 hour period.
q6h or q6°How many times is this med given? Every 6 hours. --This med will be given 4 times in a 24 hour period.
q8h or q8°How many times is this med given? Every 8 hours. --This med will be given 3 times in a 24 hour period. Ex: 6 am, 2 pm, 10 pm
q12h or q12° Every 12 hours. --This med will be given 2 times in a 24 hour period.Ex: 6 am and 6 pm
every other day Every other day.--Interpreted by days of the month- nurse writes on medication record: odd days of the month
qod or q.o.d DO NOT USE!!! Every other day
prn As Needed.--This abbreviation is usually combined with a time abbreviation.
3 times weekly Three times per week.--With this abbreviation time relates to days of the week.
tiw or t.i.w. DO NOT USE!!! Three times per week. Consfused with tid- three times per DAY.
biw Twice per week.-- Sample Time: 10 am on Monday, Thursday
12 Midnight 0000 - Military Time
5 AM 0500
7:30 AM 0730
11:45 AM 1145
12:00 Noon 1200
1 PM 1300
2:30 PM 1430
11:59 PM 2359
Right Ear Do Not Use: AD!!! Write out
Left Ear Do Not Use: AL!!! Write out
Each Ear Do Not Use: AU!!! Write out
HHN Hand- held nebulizer: Medication is placed in a device that produces a fine spray for inhalation
IM Intramuscularly: The injection is given at a 90° angle into a muscle.
IV Intravenously: The injection is given into a vein.
IVP Intravenous push: Medication is injected directly in a vein.
IVPB Intravenous piggyback: Medication prepared in a small volume of fluid is attached to an IV (which is already infusing fluid into a patient's vein) at specified times.
MDI Metered- dose inhaler: An aerosol device delivers medication by inhalation.
NEB Nebulizer- Medication is placed in a device that produces a fine spray for inhalations.
NGT (ng) Nasogastric tube- Medication is placed in the stomach through a tube in the nose.
In the Right Eye Do Not Use: OD!!! WRITE OUT
In the Left Eye Do Not Use: OS!!! WRITE OUT
In Both Eyes Do Not Use: OU!!! WRITE OUT
po (PO) By Mouth
pr (PR) In the rectum (per rectum)
Sub-Q or Sub Q Subcutaneously; Do Not Use: sc sq/s.c. s.q.!!!
SL Sublingual, under the tongue
S & S Swish and Swallow- By using tongue and cheek muscles, the patient coats his/her mouth with a liquid medication.
cc cubic centimeter- this is a measure of volume usually reserved for measuring gases. However, may still find it used as a liquid measure. (1 cc approx = 16 drops from a medicine dropper). DO NOT USE "substitute mL", although they are equal.
g (gm, Gm) Gram- solid measure of weight
kg (Kg) Kilogram- weight measure (1 kilogram = 2.2 pounds)
L Liter- liquid measure (1 liter is a little more than a quart)
mcg Microgram- measure of weight (1,000 micrograms = 1 milligrams [mg]) DO NOT USE "µg"
mEq Milliequivalent- no equivalent necessary. Drugs are preapered and ordered in this weight measure
mg Milligram- measure of weight (1,000 milligrams = 1 gram [g])
mL (ml) Milliliter- liquid measure. The terms cubic centimeter (cc) and militer are interchangeable in dosage. (1 cc = 1 milliliter).
unit Do Not Use: U. This is a measure of a biologic activity. Nurses do not calculate this measure.
Apothecary Measures: Why discouraged? Common in the US during colonial times. Discouraged from use due to: 1. Equivalency with metric system is not exact. 2. System requires Roman numerals and fractions 3. Apothecary symbols can easily be misinterpreted
m minim- apothecary measure, found on some syringes. 16 Minim= 1 cubic centimeter (cc)
dr dram- apothecary measure for liquids. 1 dram= 4 mL.
gr grain- apothecary measure. Generally, 60 mg = 1 grain, EXCEPT acetaminophen (Tylenol) and aspirin: 65 mg = 1 grain. Should be written out "grain".
gtt drop- apothecary measure for liquids; used for ordering eye medications. 1 drop= 1 m
i This letter indicated "one" in Roman numerals, which are conveyed by letters of the alphabet. Roman numerals nerver have more than three of the same digit in a row.
pt Pint: 1 pint =500 mL, 1 quart= 1 L= 100 mL
qt Quart: 1/2 quart = 1 pt= 500 mL
tbsp Tablespoon: 1 tablespoon = 15 mL
tsp Teaspoon: 1 teaspoon = 5 mL
oz Ounce: 1 ounce = 30 mL
cap, caps Capsule: medications is encased in a gelatin shell
CR Controlled Release
LA Long Acting
SA Sustained Action
SR Slow Release
DS Double Strength
EC Enteric Coated - tablet coated with a substance that will not dissolve in the acid secretions of the stomachl instead it dissolves in the more alkaline secretions of the intestines.
el, elix Elixir- drug is dissolved in hydroalcoholic sweetend base.
sol Solution- drug is contained in a clear liquid preparation.
sp Spirit- an alcholic solution of a volatile sunbstance
sup, supp Suppository- this is a solid, cylindrically shaped drug that can be inserted into a body opening
susp Suspension- small particles of a drug are dispersed in a liquid base and must be shaken before being poured; gels and magmas are also suspensions.
syr Syrup- sugar is dissolved in a liquid medication and flavored to disguise the taste.
tab, tabs Tablet- med is compressed or molded into a solid form; additional ingredients are used to shape
unit Do Not Use: U. This is a measure of a biologic activity. Nurses do not calculate this measure.
Apothecary Measures: Why discouraged? Common in the US during colonial times. Discouraged from use due to: 1. Equivalency with metric system is not exact. 2. System requires Roman numerals and fractions 3. Apothecary symbols can easily be misinterpreted
m minim- apothecary measure, found on some syringes. 16 Minim= 1 cubic centimeter (cc)
dr dram- apothecary measure for liquids. 1 dram= 4 mL.
gr grain- apothecary measure. Generally, 60 mg = 1 grain, EXCEPT acetaminophen (Tylenol) and aspirin: 65 mg = 1 grain. Should be written out "grain".
gtt drop- apothecary measure for liquids; used for ordering eye medications. 1 drop= 1 m
i This letter indicated "one" in Roman numerals, which are conveyed by letters of the alphabet. Roman numerals nerver have more than three of the same digit in a row.
pt Pint: 1 pint =500 mL, 1 quart= 1 L= 100 mL
qt Quart: 1/2 quart = 1 pt= 500 mL
tbsp Tablespoon: 1 tablespoon = 15 mL
tsp Teaspoon: 1 teaspoon = 5 mL
oz Ounce: 1 ounce = 30 mL
cap, caps Capsule: medications is encased in a gelatin shell
CR Controlled Release
LA Long Acting
SA Sustained Action
SR Slow Release
DS Double Strength
EC Enteric Coated - tablet coated with a substance that will not dissolve in the acid secretions of the stomachl instead it dissolves in the more alkaline secretions of the intestines.
el, elix Elixir- drug is dissolved in hydroalcoholic sweetend base.
sol Solution- drug is contained in a clear liquid preparation.
sp Spirit- an alcholic solution of a volatile sunbstance
sup, supp Suppository- this is a solid, cylindrically shaped drug that can be inserted into a body opening
susp Suspension- small particles of a drug are dispersed in a liquid base and must be shaken before being poured; gels and magmas are also suspensions.
syr Syrup- sugar is dissolved in a liquid medication and flavored to disguise the taste.
tab, tabs Tablet- med is compressed or molded into a solid form; additional ingredients are used to shape and color the tablet.
unit Do Not Use: U. This is a measure of a biologic activity. Nurses do not calculate this measure.
Apothecary Measures: Why discouraged? Common in the US during colonial times. Discouraged from use due to: 1. Equivalency with metric system is not exact. 2. System requires Roman numerals and fractions 3. Apothecary symbols can easily be misinterpreted
m minim- apothecary measure, found on some syringes. 16 Minim= 1 cubic centimeter (cc)
dr dram- apothecary measure for liquids. 1 dram= 4 mL.
gr grain- apothecary measure. Generally, 60 mg = 1 grain, EXCEPT acetaminophen (Tylenol) and aspirin: 65 mg = 1 grain. Should be written out "grain".
gtt drop- apothecary measure for liquids; used for ordering eye medications. 1 drop= 1 m
i This letter indicated "one" in Roman numerals, which are conveyed by letters of the alphabet. Roman numerals nerver have more than three of the same digit in a row.
pt Pint: 1 pint =500 mL, 1 quart= 1 L= 100 mL
qt Quart: 1/2 quart = 1 pt= 500 mL
tbsp Tablespoon: 1 tablespoon = 15 mL
tsp Teaspoon: 1 teaspoon = 5 mL
oz Ounce: 1 ounce = 30 mL
cap, caps Capsule: medications is encased in a gelatin shell
CR Controlled Release
LA Long Acting
SA Sustained Action
SR Slow Release
DS Double Strength
EC Enteric Coated - tablet coated with a substance that will not dissolve in the acid secretions of the stomachl instead it dissolves in the more alkaline secretions of the intestines.
el, elix Elixir- drug is dissolved in hydroalcoholic sweetend base.
sol Solution- drug is contained in a clear liquid preparation.
sp Spirit- an alcholic solution of a volatile sunbstance
sup, supp Suppository- this is a solid, cylindrically shaped drug that can be inserted into a body opening
susp Suspension- small particles of a drug are dispersed in a liquid base and must be shaken before being poured; gels and magmas are also suspensions.
syr Syrup- sugar is dissolved in a liquid medication and flavored to disguise the taste.
tab, tabs Tablet- med is compressed or molded into a solid form; additional ingredients are used to shape and color the tablet.
tr, tinct Tincture- this is a liquid alcoholic orr hydroalcoholic solution of a drug.
ung, oint. Ointment- this is a semisolid drug preparation that is applied to the skin (for external use ONLY).
KVO Keep Vein Open; example order: 1000 mL dextrose 5% in water IV KVO. The nurse is to continue infusing this fluid.
TKO To Keep Open
Discontinue Discontinue- DO NOT USE D/C
NKA No Known Allergie- this is an important assessment that is noted on the medication record of a patient.
NKDA No Know Drug Allergies- this is an important assessment that is noted on the medication record of a patient.
Created by: nicole4rc