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Abbreviations in Medical Communications

Autor:   •  November 7, 2011  •  Term Paper  •  262 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,496 Views

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1. Discuss what problems might occur in the use of abbreviations in medical communications.

Miscommunication is the biggest threat. There has been a push to eliminate some abbreviations because they can be mistaken for something else. For example .4 mg of a substance should be written 0.4 mg in case the leading period is not seen and 4 mg is accidentally given. Other abbreviations may not be recognized by some healthcare profesionals.MsO4 is sometimes used to describe morphine sulfate, but it is discouraged as it could look like magnesium sulfate to another person.Mcg, or micrograms, is discouraged as it may be misunderstood as mgs, or milligrams. The solution to most of these problems is to spell the word out in its entirety to prevent mistakes. In general, they are trying to prevent overdosing of medications, which is relatively more dangerous than accidental under-dosing.

2. What situations have you experienced like this?

I personally have not had any problems with this. Knock on wood (YET) but now I am aware that this could happen I hope it don't. I would feel horrible to cause a mistake that could hurt someone due to an abbreviation error.

3. What can you do to avoid these kinds of problems?

I feel that just being aware of what to look for is a major problem solver. Being familiar with all terms and abbreviations that are similar and are commonly mistaken will help to avoid faulty dosages and misunderstandings that could cause havoc in the long run. Always keep up with what is needed to know and pay close attention.

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