Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Tackling The Veterinary Terminology: Suffixes (-scopy)

Remember the Spelling Bee? Big words are easier to tackle when you understand how they're put together. Veterinary terms are composed in the same way. Just like with other words, the main parts of a veterinary term are a prefix, a root, and a suffix. The difference is that they typically come more directly from Greek or Latin.

The suffix is the bit that will tell you about what procedure, condition, disease or disorder you're dealing with.
-scopy [skəpi] from Greek - to examine, observe

In general words ending with -scopy indicate viewing or examination, typically with an instrument ending with -scope. Figures, doesn't it? In general sense, this includes instruments such as a microscope or a telescope  too.

An endoscope
For our purpose, though, we're talking about procedures using a thin optical instrument inserted into a cavity through a small incision, called an endoscope.

These days, -scopy doesn't just mean examination. The same instrument can be equipped with an attachment to perform a biopsy or a surgery.

Some examples are  laparoscopy (procedure within intra-abdominal or pelvic region), thoracoscopy (examination of the lung surfaces and pleural space) , arthroscopy (examination or surgical procedure in the joint), etc.

Compare with laparotomy, which is surgically opening the abdomen.

Related articles:
Veterinary Highlights: Laparoscopy, Thoracoscopy, And Endoscopic-Assisted Procedures 
Veterinary Suffixes (-itis)
Veterinary Suffixes (-oma) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-pathy)  
Veterinary Suffixes (-osis) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-iasis) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-tomy) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-ectomy) 

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