Saturday, March 15, 2008

Medical Transcipton - Transcribing Laboratory Tests

By Connie Limon

The number of new diagnostic laboratory tests has dramatically increased over the past decade or so. The complexity of the tests offered is also greater than ever before in medical history. This growth in the field of laboratory medicine is due to the demand by physicians for new and improved diagnostic procedures and the ever-expanding capacity of modern technology to meet this demand with more and more sophisticated laboratory methods and equipment.

A medical transcriptionist will come in contact with dictation on a daily basis that details results of laboratory tests performed on patients. The medical transcriptionist is required to transcribe the material with accuracy. It is extremely important for the medical transcriptionist to be familiar with the names and abbreviations of many laboratory tests, the reasons they are available to physicians, and the meaning of the lab results.

Hospital laboratories are equipped to handle hundreds of tests each day. Larger hospitals perform all standard laboratory tests, as well as uncommon tests, which may be required by a smaller hospital or clinic whose facilities are not equipped to handle unusual tests.

There are many brief forms, slang, and special terms associated with the blood. Brief forms are acceptable in medical reports, however, the medical transcriptionist should always spell out in full any slang words which are dictated. Examples are:

• Monos is an acceptable brief form that the physician may dictate. The medical transcriptionist should type monocytes.

• Lytes is a slang term the physician may use in dictation. The medical transcriptionist should type electrolytes.

Other common tests include:

• Hemoglobin and hematocrit: A physician may dictate H&H. The Medical Transcriptionist should type: Hemoglobin and hematocrit

• Low-density lipoproteins: A physician may dictate LDL. The Medical Transcriptionist should type: Low-density lipoproteins

Laboratory test results are measured and reported most often using the metric system. Transcribing laboratory tests presents unique challenges for the Medical Transcriptionist. Being able to correctly transcribe the name of a laboratory test or its abbreviation is just one step in the process. Numerical results must be transcribed with “absolute” accuracy with extra care taken to place decimal points accurately and to transcribe units of measure correctly.

A Medical Transcriptioniost should also have a firm grasp of why a test was ordered and what the results indicate. As a student of Medical Transcription, you will want to study with extra care the critical area of laboratory tests transcription diligently. The technology of medicine increases daily. Laboratory tests and procedures also increase on a daily basis. It is a real and extremely necessary challenge for the Medical Transcriptionist to stay up-to-date of these changes.

This article is FREE to publish with the resource box.

© 2007 Connie Limon All Rights Reserved

Written by: Connie Limon, Medical Transcriptionist. Visit us at for more information about the unique and rewarding career choice of Medical Transcription. Visit Camelot Articles for a variety of FREE reprint articles for your newsletter, web sites or blogs.

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