Latest update date: February 30, 06

Medical translation is the translation of medical documents and materials (including terminology) from one language to another. Millions of people will benefit from medical translation every day. Let's learn about the Importance of Medical Translation

Subjects Using Medical Translation Services

First, let's look at some of the entities and organizations that benefit from medical translation:

  • Pharmaceutical companies use medical translations as drug labels to indicate who prescribes, drug name, size, dosage, directions, side effects, and warnings.
  • Academic institutions use medical translation services to provide information to student organizations, student families, teachers, and governments.
  • Companies use medical translation to ensure compliance by ensuring that employees have access to medical information related to safety and insurance issues.
  • Insurance companies use medical translations to help reimburse medical expenses incurred outside of the United States.
  • Governments use medical interpreters to monitor health institutions, inform the public, communicate information to the media, and communicate with medical professionals and other governments. Imagine how the COVID-19 pandemic would affect our country without medical interpretation services.
  • When testing is required in the US and coming from other non-English speaking countries/regions, individuals require rigorous medical testing and full reporting.
  • Medical device patents and their use need to be translated as they are submitted to other countries for evaluation and use.
Subjects Using Medical Translation Services
Who Benefit From Medical Translation

The second most spoken language in the US is Spanish. Medical translations from English to Spanish, and vice versa, are an essential resource for serving communities across the United States. While other languages ​​spoken in the US may not be as common as Spanish, translation is still a must to help these people deal with issues like prescribing for government notices and caregiving. health care.

>>> See more: Health Care Services - Medical - Nursing

The Work of Medical Translators

A medical interpreter is just like everyone else, right? They review medical documents and translate them into the requested language. There is absolutely no room for error in medical and healthcare translations, and highly specialized knowledge of the translator is required. Read on to learn some examples of the differences between professional interpreters in the healthcare field.

Patient care

Medical interpreters play an important role in patient care. During the patient's stay in the hospital, charts and instructions from the multilingual staff, the patient, and the nursing staff must be translated. This includes instructions for physical therapists, nurses, and orders.

Medical advancement

Due to the language barrier, medical interpreting removes restrictions on medical advancement. With the development of communication methods such as email, doctors can tell colleagues about new information in seconds. Laboratories can exchange information about trials, which can then be used to set up research to test new drugs, new devices, and new procedures.

Translation - Medical Advancement
Translation for Medical Development

Medical language

After the patient is discharged from the hospital, the translation of medical documents will continue. Instructions on how to use the device and medication were sent home with the patient and caregiver to help the patient recover with as little pain and difficulty as possible.

High precision medical terms and misinterpreted words or numbers can hurt someone. Medical terminology also varies widely in different fields, such as dentistry and optometry.

Medical interpreters must be able to translate medical terms prepared for medical professionals, but they must also know how to translate patient medical documents. If you were communicating with a doctor, you would say “scapula,” but if you were communicating with a patient, “scapula” would make more sense. Or, "fangs" or "wingbones" may have more meaning in the local dialect. Also, some medical websites ask for certain keywords for patients, and completely different keywords for doctors and researchers. Understanding the audience and usage of these documents is essential to providing medical translators with brochures, case studies, or websites.

Some Medical Terms Medical Interpreters Must Know


  • “Ad lib” is a medical acronym and has nothing to do with stand-up comedy, but it means “freedom.”
  • OCP is a word that begins to mean "birth control pill".
  • NICU is an acronym that means “Newborn Intensive Care Unit”.
  • Medical interpreters must be able to correctly identify all languages ​​in the source and target languages.

Compound word

A legal name is a word or term given by someone. For example, Graves' disease is named after Robert Graves and does not refer to where the body is buried. Please also note that words with the same name may differ. In the United States, Graves' disease may be the name of the disease, but in Europe it is more commonly known as "von Baseerdorf" after Karl von Basedow.

Based on experience with content and ability to understand context, professional medical translators must be able to accurately indicate these contents. The term form is widely used in medicine.

Paired words

Compound words are two or more words that have the same original meaning but different meanings. Consider “cut” and “tear”. “Cut” is a generic term, while “laceration” in medical terms usually means a deep cut and/or a serrated cut. “Cut” can be a noun or a verb, but “tear” is always a noun in the form of the verb “to tear”. Medical translators must be acutely aware of these terms.

>>> See more: Medical Research Translation Service

Impact of Medical Epidemic

Some practical examples of how medical translation works:

  • Students and professionals from all over the world can read articles published in medical and scientific journals.
  • Ideally, the hospital should keep records for future use. A small detail in the patient's medical history can provide insight.
  • Textbooks and classroom materials can be translated for use by professors and students who will become the next generation of medical professionals.
  • Communication between professionals is essential for generating promotional and transactional information. If pathologists in Egypt need to speak to oncologists in Australia, they can use medical translation services to facilitate the conversation.
  • Health organizations have found that overpayments, negligence and re-injury have been reduced. They may also meet HIPAA regulations.
  • Medical services reduce stress, pain and the risk of injury recurrence for patients. If the patient's chart is misinterpreted as actually having pneumonia from inhaling other fluids, it is not possible to get the correct treatment.
  • Medical interpreters, especially in hospitals and dentistry, together with medical interpreters, can provide medical information to people with limited English proficiency. It is prudent to ask your users about the services they need to meet their needs.

Examples of work in the medical translation service

  • Medical facilities from doctor to patient, including intravenous care, plastic surgery and various alternative medicine.
  • The hospital provides patients with subtitles and audio with Arabic and Spanish medical video translations to provide the best home care during cancer.
  • Translate documents from insurance companies for a wide range of customers.
  • Medical research from the hospital to the international community, and vice versa.
    Spanish online training program for doctors.
  • Multilingual support guide for medical devices.

Better Translations, Better Care

Our mission is to break down social language barriers in healthcare and medical fields. Ethics, empathy, and knowledge do wonders for the process of interpreting and communicating, thus reducing pain.

Language Barriers Looks Medical
Breaking Language Barriers in Healthcare

Whether it is a single website or a library of medical textbooks, please contact us to address your medical translation needs. We have professionals involved in this work and would like to talk to you about your project. Our translation agency will create the necessary team for your project.

> See more: Translation about COVID-19: What role does translation play in the midst of the pandemic

Translation Experience

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