Glossary of Veterinary Abbreviations A to Z

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  • A

    ā Ante (before)
    A- Not eating
    AA Affected area
    AAD Antibiotic-associated diarrhea
    AAFCO American Association of Feed Control Officials
    AAFP American Association of Feline Practitioners
    AAHA American Animal Hospital Association
    AAHC Australian Animal Health Council
    AAVC American Association of Veterinary Clinicians
    Ab/AB Antibody
    Feline blood group
    abc or abx Antibiotics
    ABC Arterial blood gas
    abd/ABD/abdo. Abdomen
    ABG Arterial blood gas
    ABVP American Board of Veterinary Practitioners
    ac, AC Ante cibum (before a meal)
    Activated charcoal
    ACE Angiotensin-converting enzyme
    ACEC Animal Care and Ethics Committee
    ACL Anterior cruciate ligament
    ACS Altered conscious state
    ACT Activated clotting time (blood test)
    ACTH Adrenocorticotropic hormone
    ACV Acyclovir (antiviral drug)
    ad., AD Auris dexter (right ear)
    AD Acute distress
    Atopic dermatitis
    ADH Antidiuretic hormone
    Adrenal-dependent hyperadrenocorticism
    ad-lib As much as desired
    ADR Adverse drug reaction
    AF Atrial fibrillation
    AFR Adverse food reaction
    A:G Albumin globulin ratio
    ag, Ag Antigen
    AGN Acute glomerulonephritis
    a.h. Alternis horis (every other hour)
    AHT Animal health technician
    AI Artificial insemination
    AIT Allergen immunotherapy
    AIW All is well
    AKI Acute kidney injury
    Ala Alanine
    ALB Albumin
    ALD Approximate lethal dose
    ALP Alkaline phosphatase
    ALS Advanced life support
    ALT Alanine transaminase
    altern. d. Alterno die (every other day)
    AMA Against medical advice
    AML Acute myeloid leukemia
    AMP Ampule
    AMS Amylase
    ANA Antinuclear antibody
    ant Anterior
    AOR At the owner’s request
    AP Anterior-posterior
    APAP Acetaminophen
    APTT Activated partial thromboplastin time
    aq Water (aqua)
    ARF Acute renal failure
    as, AS Auris sinister (left ear)
    ASAVA Australian Small Animal Veterinary Association
    ASPCA American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
    AST Aspartate aminotransferase
    ATE Aortic thromboembolism
    Adenosine triphosphate
    ATT at this time
    au. AU Auris utraque (both ears)
    aurist. Auristillae (ear drops)
    AUSC Ante (before)
    Auscultation Average
    AV Arteriovenous
    AVA Australian Veterinary Association
    AVSS Afebrile, vital signs stable
    A&W Alive and well
    Ax Axillary
    AXR Abdominal x-ray
    AZT Azidothymidine


    B&A Bright and alert
    B4 Before
    Ba Barium
    BA Bile acids
    BAER Brain stem auditory evoked responses
    BAL Dimercaprol
    Bronchoalveolar lavage
    BAR Bright, alert and responsive
    BARH Bright, alert, responsive and hydrated
    BBB Blood-brain barrier
    BBT Basal body temperature
    BC Blood culture
    Bone condition
    BCC Basal cell carcinoma
    Blood chemistry profile
    BCS Body condition score
    BEG Boutique, exotic ingredients, and grain-free (diets)
    BER Basal energy requirement
    BG Blood glucose
    BGC Blood glucose curve
    BGL Blood glucose level
    BID, bid, b.i.d. Bis in die (twice a day)
    BIOP Been in owner’s possession
    BIW Twice a week
    b/l Bilateral (both sides)
    BLD Blood
    bl. cult Blood culture
    BLS Basic life support
    BM Bone marrow
    Bowel movement
    BMbx Bone marrow biopsy
    BOH Bucket on head
    BOT Base of tail
    bp, BP Blood pressure
    bpm Beats or breaths per minute
    BS Breath sound
    Bowel sound
    Blood sugar
    Body secretions
    BSL Blood sugar level
    BT Bleeding time
    BUN Blood urea nitrogen
    BV Bacterial vaginosis
    BVMS Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery
    BVM Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine
    BW/BWT Bodyweight
    Blood work
    Bx Biopsy
    BZD’s Benzodiazepines


    C Centigrade, cervical vertebrae (C1, C2 etc)
    C & S
    Culture and sensitivity
    Ca, CA Calcium
    CaOx Calcium oxalate
    cap Capsule
    CAT/CT Computed axial tomography / Computed tomography
    Cath. Catheter
    CAUTI Catheter-associated urinary tract infection
    CBA Cat bite abscess
    CBC Complete blood count
    Crushed by car
    cc Cubic centimetre
    CCB Calcium channel blocker
    CCF Congestive cardiac failure
    Complicated crown fracture
    CDC Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    CCL Cranial cruciate ligament
    CDI Clostridium dLinearifficile infection
    CDV Cidofovir (antiviral drug)
    CE Clinical exam
    cf In comparison to
    CFA Cat fight abscess
    CFC Cat fight cellulitis
    CFT Capillary filling time
    CFW Cat fight wound
    CGH Can go home
    CHD Chronic heart disease
    Congenital heart defect
    Congenital hip dysplasia
    Coronary heart disease
    CHEM-7 A basic metabolic panel (blood urea nitrogen, carbon dioxide, creatinine, glucose, serum chloride, serum potassium, serum sodium)
    CHF Congestive heart failure
    CHO Carbohydrate
    CHOL, chol Cholesterol
    CHOP Chemotherapy protocol: Cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine and prednisone
    CI Contraindicated
    Confidence interval
    Cl Chloride
    CLL Cervical line lesion (on a cat’s tooth)
    CK / CPK Creatine kinase
    CKD Chronic kidney disease
    CL Cleft lip
    CLP Cleft lip and palate
    CM Cardiomyopathy
    CMI Cell-mediated immunity
    CMPS Composite measure pain score
    CN Cranial nerves
    CNS Central nervous system
    CO Carbon monoxide
    CO2 Carbon dioxide
    COL Eyelid coloboma
    COPD Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
    COX Cyclooxygenase
    CP Cleft palate
    CPR Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
    CRI Constant rate of infusion
    Creat Creatinine
    crit Hematocrit
    CRT Capillary refill time
    Clinical signs
    CSD Cat scratch disease
    CSF Cerebrospinal fluid
    CV Cardiovascular
    CVD Cardiovascular disease
    CVI Cervical vertebral instability
    CVP Chemotherapy protocol: Cyclophosphamide, vincristine and prednisolone
    CVT Certified veterinary technician
    Cx Clinical signs
    CXR Chest X-ray
    Cysto Cystocentesis


    D Diarrhea
    DAW Dispense as written
    DBW Dog bite wound
    d/c Discontinue
    DCM Dilated cardiomyopathy
    DDD Degenerative disc disease
    DDL Dull, depressed, lethargic
    DDx Differential diagnosis
    DER Dermoid
    DhWB Diarrhea with blood
    DI Diabetes insipidus
    DIC Disseminated intravascular coagulation
    dil Dilute
    DJD Degenerative joint disease
    DKA Diabetic ketoacidosis
    DLH Domestic longhair
    DLT Dose-limiting toxicity
    Diabetes mellitus
    DNA Deoxyribonucleic acid
    DNS Dextrose normal saline (IV solution)
    DOA Dead on arrival
    D/O Drain out
    DOI Duration of immunity
    D/R Drain removal
    drp(s) Drops
    DS Dental score
    DSH Domestic shorthair
    DUDE Defecating, urinating, drinking and eating
    Dx Diagnosis


    E&B Euthanasia and burial
    E&C Euthanasia and cremation
    EAGS Empty anal glands
    EBM Evidence-based medicine
    ECF Extracellular fluid
    ECG/EKG Electrocardiogram
    ED Every day
    EDDU Eating, drinking, defecating and urinating
    EDUD Eating, drinking, urinating and defecating
    EENT Eyes, ears, nose and throat
    EFA Essential fatty acid
    ELF Enzyme-labelled fluorescence
    ELISA Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay
    EM Electron microscopy
    EOD Every other day
    EOFB Extraocular foreign body
    Eos Eosinophil
    EPG Eggs per gram of feces
    EPIT Epicutaneous immunotherapy
    EPO Erythropoietin
    ER Emergency room
    ERG Electroretinogram
    ESRD End-stage renal disease
    EtOH Alcohol
    ETW Tracheal wash
    EUGA Examine under general anesthetic
    exp Expired



    F Fahrenheit
    Filial (F1, F2 etc)
    F3 Feline viral rhinotracheitis calicivirus and panleukopenia (vaccine)
    F4 (WA) Feline vaccination: Enteritis, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Feline leukemia virus
    F4 (QLD) Feline vaccination: Enteritis, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Chlamydiosis
    F5 Feline vaccination: Enteritis, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Chlamydiosis, Feline leukemia virus
    FA Fluorescent antibody
    Fatty acids
    FAD Flea allergy dermatitis
    FAST Focused assessment sonography for trauma
    FATE Feline aortic thromboembolism
    FB Foreign body
    FBC Full blood count
    FBS Fasting blood sugar
    FCK Flat chested syndrome
    FCRVP Feline viral rhinotracheitis calicivirus and panleukopenia (vaccine)
    FCS Feline corneal sequestrum
    FCV Feline calicivirus
    FDA Food and drug administration
    Fe Iron
    FeBb Feline Bordetella bronchiseptica
    FECV Feline enteric coronavirus
    Fel Feline
    FeL Feline leishmaniasis
    FELLC Feline lymphosarcoma-leukemia complex
    FeLV Feline leukemia virus
    FFP Fresh frozen plasma
    FHA The femoral head and neck osteotomy
    FHD Feline heartworm disease
    FHV Feline herpesvirus
    FIA Feline infectious anemia
    FIC Feline idiopathic cystitis
    FIP Feline infectious peritonitis
    FIV Feline immunodeficiency virus
    Fl Fluid
    Intact female
    FLUTD Feline lower urinary tract disease
    FNA Fine needle aspirate
    FOCMA Feline oncornavirus-associated cell membrane antigen
    FORL Feline odontoclastic resorptive lesion
    FOS Full of stool
    FPP Feline plasma cell pododermatitis
    FRV Feline rhinotracheitis virus
    Feline rotavirus
    Spayed female
    Fecal smear
    FSV Feline sarcoma virus
    FTT Failure to thrive
    F/U Follow up
    FUO Fever of unknown origin
    FUS Feline urologic syndrome
    FVRCP Feline viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, panleukopenia (F3 vaccine)
    Fx Fracture


    GA General anesthesia
    GABA Gamma-aminobutyric acid
    GAS Gastroschisis
    GB Gallbladder
    GC General condition
    GCV Ganciclovir (antiviral drug)
    GDU Gastroduodenal ulceration
    GERD Gastroesophageal reflux disease
    GFR Glomerular filtration rate
    GGT γ-Glutamyltransferase
    GH Growth hormone
    GI Gastrointestinal
    Glu Glucose
    gm Gram
    GN Glomerulonephritis
    GSW Gunshot wound
    Gt Drop
    Gtt Drops
    Gastric ulcer
    GvH Graft vs host


    H Histamine
    H2O Water
    H2O2 Hydrogen peroxide
    H & M Hematemesis and melena
    Hb Hemoglobin
    HBC Hit by car
    HBP High blood pressure
    HCO3 Bicarbonate
    HCM Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
    Hct/HCT Hematocrit
    HD Hip dysplasia
    Craniofacial (head) defect
    HDDST High dose dexamethasone suppression test
    HDL High-density lipoprotein
    HDM House dust mite
    HF Heart failure
    Hg/Hgb Hemoglobin
    HGE Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis
    HH Hiatus hernia
    HL Hepatic lipase
    H/L Heart and lungs
    HLD Hyperlipidemia
    H/O History of
    HR Heart rate
    Hazard ratio
    HSA Hemangiosarcoma
    HSL Hypertonic saline
    HT/HTN Hypertension
    HVS Hyperviscosity syndrome
    HW Heartworm
    HWP Heartworm prevention
    HWtest Heartworm test
    HyperA Hyperadrenocorticism
    HyperT4 Hyperthyroidism
    Hx History of


    I Iodine
    IBD Inflammatory bowel disease
    IC Immunocompromised
    Intensive care
    Interstitial cystitis
    Immune complex
    ICA Iridocorneal angle
    ICF Intracellular fluid
    I & D Incision and drainage
    ID Intradermal
    IDA Iron deficiency anemia
    IDDM Insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus
    IDST Intradermal skin testing
    IDT Intradermal testing
    IDU Idoxuridine (antiviral drug)
    IFA Indirect fluorescent antibody
    IFN Interferon (antiviral drug)
    Ig Immunoglobulin
    IgA Immunoglobulin A
    IgD Immunoglobulin D
    IgE Immunoglobulin E
    IgG Immunoglobulin G
    IGR Insect growth regulators
    IHA Indirect hemagglutination
    IL Interleukin
    ILIT Intralymphatic immunotherapy
    IM Intramuscular
    IMI Intramuscular injection
    IN Intranasal
    INH Inhaled
    Inj Injection
    IOFB Intraocular foreign body
    IOL Intraocular lens
    IOP Intraocular pressure
    IP Intraperitoneal
    IPPB Intermittent positive pressure breathing
    IQR Interquartile range
    ITP Immune-mediated thrombocytopenia
    IU International unit
    IV Intravenously
    IVD/IVDD Intervertebral disc/disease
    IVP Intravenous pyelogram, intravenous pyelography
    Ix Investigation


    JPP Joint protection plan
    J tube Jejunostomy tube (feeding tube)


    K Potassium
    KA Ketoacidosis
    KBH Kicked by horse
    KBr Potassium bromide
    Kcal Kilocalories
    KCS Keratoconjunctivitis sicca
    Kg Kilogram
    KOH Potassium hydroxide
    KTZ Ketoconazole
    KUB Kidneys, ureters, and bladder (x-ray)


    L Leukocytes
    Lumbar vertebrae
    LA Left atrium
    Local anesthetic
    Lac Laceration
    Lap Laparotomy
    Lat Lateral
    lb Pound (weight)
    LBO Large bowel obstruction
    LBP Low back pain
    LD Lethal dose
    LDDST Low dose dexamethasone suppression test
    LDL Low-density lipoprotein
    LE Lupus erythematosus
    Linear foreign body
    LFT Liver function test
    Lig Ligament
    LIU Lens induced uveitis
    LH Luteinising hormone
    LN Lymph node
    LPE Lymphocytic
    plasmacytic enteritis
    LR Lactated Ringers
    LS Left side
    LSA Lymphosarcoma
    LUT Lower urinary tract
    LV Left ventricle
    LVT Licensed veterinary technician
    Lytes Electrolytes


    MAC Minimal antibiotic concentration
    MACVs Member of the Australian College of Veterinary Scientists
    MAE Moves all extremities
    MC&S Microscopy (gram stain), culture and sensitivity
    MCA Motor car accident
    MCH Mean corpuscular hemoglobin
    MCT Mast cell tumour
    MCV Mean corpuscular volume
    Meds. Medications
    mg Milligram
    ml Millilitre
    MM Mucous membranes
    Multiple myeloma
    M/N, M(n) Neutered male
    MOPP Chemotherapy protocol: mechlorethamine, vincristine, procarbazine and prednisone
    MPL Medial patella luxation
    MPV Mean platelet volume
    MR Mitral regurgitation
    MRI Magnetic resonance imaging
    MS Musculoskeletal
    mt Metatarsal bone
    MTD Maximum tolerated dose
    Mx Monitor
    Multiple times


    Na Sodium
    NaCI Sodium chloride (normal saline)
    NAD No abnormality detected
    Not actually done
    NAF No abnormal findings
    NDR Not doing right
    n/e Not eating
    NG Tube Nasal gastric tube
    NI Neonatal isoerythrolysis
    NKA No known allergies
    NM Neutered male
    NPO Nothing by mouth
    NR No refill
    nRBC Nucleated red blood cells
    NS Normal saline
    NSAIDs Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
    NSF No significant findings
    NSR Normal sinus rhythm
    NSU No significant change from the last exam
    NTE Not to exceed
    NTI Non-thyroidal illness
    N/V Nausea and vomiting
    NVL No visible lesions
    NWB Non-weight-bearing


    O Owner
    O2 Oxygen
    OA Osteoarthritis (degenerative joint disease)
    OCD Obsessive-compulsive disorder
    OCNE Off colour not eating
    OD Oculus dextrous (right eye)
    OE Otitis externa
    OHE Ovariohysterectomy
    OI Otitis interna
    OID, oid Once a day (medicine)
    OIT Oral immunotherapy
    oint. Ointment
    OM Otitis media
    ONF Oronasal fistula
    ONH Optic nerve head
    OP Organophosphate
    OPP Organophosphate poisoning
    OR Operating room
    Owner reports
    Odds ratio
    OS Oculus sinister (left eye)
    OTC Over the counter
    OU Oculus uterque (both eyes)
    OVH Ovariohysterectomy (spay)
    oxytet Oxytetracycline (antibiotic)
    Oz Ounce


    P Phosphorous
    PABs Pre-anesthetic bloods
    PAF Platelet-activating factor
    PALP Palpitate
    path. Pathology
    Pc Post cebum (after meals)
    PCFO Phone call from owner
    PCR Polymerase chain reaction
    PCV Packed cell volume
    Primary care veterinarian
    PDA Patent ductus arteriosus
    PDH Pituitary-dependent hyperadrenocorticism
    PDx Provisional diagnosis
    PE Physical examination
    Pectus excavatum
    PEI Pancreatic exocrine insufficiency
    PF Platelet factor
    Polycystic kidney disease
    Pl Eff Pleural effusion
    PLN Peripheral lymph nodes
    PLR Pupillary light reflex
    Plt Platelet
    PO Per os (by mouth)
    PPN Partial parenteral nutrition
    PRA Progressive retinal atrophy
    ersistent right aortic arch
    PRBC Packed red blood cells
    Pseudorabies virus
    pt Patient
    Prothrombin time
    PTH Parathyroid hormone
    PTS Put to sleep
    PU/PD Polyuria/polydipsia
    Px Physical examination


    QAR Quiet, alert, responsive
    qd, QD Quaque die (once a day)
    QID, qid Quater in die (four times a day or every 6 hours)
    ql Quantum libet (as much as desired)
    QOD Quaque altera die (every other day)
    QOL Quality of life
    qv Quantum vis (as much as you please)


    rads Radiographs
    RAST Radioallergosorbent test
    RBC Red blood cell count
    rDVM Referring veterinarian
    RDW Red cell distribution width
    RNA Ribonucleic acid
    ROM Range of motion
    RPE Retinal pigment epithelium
    RR Respiratory rate
    Relative risk
    RSAT Rapid slide agglutination test
    RV Rabies vaccine
    Rx Prescription


    SAP Serum alkaline phosphatase
    SBA Serum bile acids
    sc, SC Subcutaneous
    SCIT Subcutaneous immunotherapy
    SD Standard deviation
    SF Spayed female
    SG Specific gravity
    SID Semel in die (once a day)
    SLE Systemic lupus erythematosus
    SLIT Sublingual immunotherapy
    SMZ Sulfamethazine
    SPEP Serum protein electrophoresis
    sp, spp Species (singular) / species (plural)
    sq, SQ Subcutaneous
    S/R Suture removal
    s/s Signs and symptoms
    SSI Surgical site infection
    SSRI Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor
    Stat Immediately
    Sx Symptoms
    SYN Syndactyly



    T3 Triiodothyronine
    T4 Thyroxine
    TBIL Total bilirubin
    TCC Transitional cell carcinoma
    TCS Total combined score
    TECA Total ear canal ablation
    TFU Trifluridine
    TID, t.i.d. Ter in die (three times a day)
    TLC Tender loving care
    TLI Trypsin-like immunoreactivity
    TNTC Too numerous to count
    TP Total protein
    TPN Total parenteral nutrition
    TPR Temperature, pulse and respiration rate
    TSH Thyroid-stimulating hormone
    TT Thrombin time
    TTO Triple tibial osteotomy


    UA Urinalysis
    UH Umbilical hernia
    UO Urinary obstruction
    UOP Urinary output
    UPC Urine protein to creatinine ratio
    Upper respiratory infection
    USG Urine specific gravity
    Urinary tract infection


    V+ Vomiting
    VCV Valacyclovir (antiviral drug)
    VD, V/D Ventral-dorsal
    Vomiting and diarrhea
    VDB Vidarabine
    VMD Veterinary medical doctor
    VPT Vital pulp therapy
    VT Veterinary technician
    Vx Vaccine


    WBC White blood cell count
    WB Western blot (test)
    WNL Within normal limits


    XIPH Everted xiphoid process
    X-Ray Radiograph


    Y Yes


    Z Sleeping


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    • Julia Wilson is the founder of Cat-World, and has researched and written over 1,000 articles about cats. She is a cat expert with over 20 years of experience writing about a wide range of cat topics, with a special interest in cat health, welfare and preventative care. Julia lives in Sydney with her family, four cats and two dogs. Full author bio