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Preferred terms or phrase Preferred shorthand (and units)
Anatomical structures
anterior junction line (on an x-ray) AJL
aortic arch AA
azygos vein AV
blood-brain barrier BBB
bronchopleural BP
caudal ventral respiratory group neurons cVRG
cerebrospinal fluid CSF
costophrenic angle CPA
cranial nerves IX, X, etc CN-IX, CN-X
descending (or dorsal) aorta DA
dorsal respiratory group neurons DRG
ductus arteriosus, patent PDA
extracellular fluid ECF
foramen ovale (patent) FO (PFO)
inferior vena cava IVC
infrahilar window (on a lateral chest x-ray) IH
laryngotracheoesophageal cleft LTEC
left atrium LA
left diaphragm LD
left interlobar pulmonary artery LIPA
left mainstem bronchus LMB
left pulmonary artery LPA
left upper lobe of the lung LUL
left ventricle LV
lower respiratory tract LRT
nucleus tractus solitarii NTS
periciliary layer of aqueous or "sol" PCL
phalangeal joints: distal inter-, proximal inter- DIP, PIP
phalangeal joint, metacarpo- MCP
posterior costophrenic angle (on lateral x-rays) PCPA
proximal left pulmonary artery PLPA
pulmonary artery PA
pulmonary vein PV
rapidly adapting receptor(s) RAR(s)
retrosternal space (as on an x-ray) RS
right atrium RA
right diaphragm RD
right interlobar pulmonary artery RIPA
right paratracheal stripe (on an AP x-ray) RPS
right pulmonary artery RPA
right upper lobe of the lung RUL
right ventricle RV (regrettably, same as residual volume)
rostral ventral respiratory group neurons rVRG
slowly adapting stretch receptor(s) SAR(s)
superior vena cava SVC
trachea TRA (on an x-ray)
tracheoesophageal fistula(e) TEF
upper respiratory tract URT
Biologicals, chemicals, cells, cytokines, and reagents
activated clotting Factor V Factor Va
alpha1 proteinase inhibitor α1-PI
angiotensin converting enzyme ACE
argon (inert gas) Ar
ATP-binding cassette protein member A3 gene ABCA3
bicarbonate anion HCO3
bone morphogenetic protein receptor type 2 BMPR2
brain natriuretic peptide BNP
carbohydrate recognition domain(s) CRD(s)
carbon dioxide CO2
carbon monoxide CO
carbonic acid H2CO3
carbonic anhydrase CA
chloride anion Cl
concentration of substance "Xy" [Xy] (units in parentheses)
dipalmitoyl phosphatidylcholine, in surfactant DPPC
epidermal growth factor EGF
erythropoietin EPO
ferric iron, as in methemoglobin Fe3+
ferrous iron, as in hemoglobin Fe2+
granulocyte colony-stimulating factor G-CSF
granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor GM-CSF
helium (inert gas) He
helium-oxygen breathing mixture Heliox
hydroxyl radical ·OH
hypochlorite ion OCl
immunoglobulins A, E, G, M IgA, IgE, IgG, IgM
insulin-like growth factor-1 IGF-1
interleukin 1β, 6, 8, 10, etc IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10
kilodaltons (of molecular weight) KDa
lamellar bodies (of surfactant) LB
long-acting β2-adrenergic receptor agonist(s) LABA(s)
low-molecular weight heparin LMWH
membrane spanning domains MSD
molecular weight (or mass) MW
muscarinic type 3 (receptors) M3
myoglobin Mb
neuron-specific enolase NSE
neutrophil(s), polymorphonuclear PMN(s)
nitric oxide NO
nitric oxide synthase (inducible) NOS (iNOS)
nonsteroidal anti-infl ammatory drug(s) NSAID(s)
normal sterile saline (0.9% NaCl) NS
nucleotide binding domain(s) NBD(s)
oxygen, molecular O2
peroxynitrite ONOO
phosphatidylethanolamine, in surfactant PEt
phosphatidylglycerol, in surfactant PG
phosphatidylinositol, in surfactant PI
phosphatidylserine, in surfactant PS
platelet activating factor PAF
platelet-derived growth factor PDGF
proton, free as in acid solution H+ or [H+]
purified protein derivative (for TB skin test) PPD
reactive nitrogen species RNS
reactive oxygen species ROS
recombinant tissue plasminogen activator rt-PA
sex hormone binding globulin-1 SHBG-1
superoxide anion ·O2
surfactant associated proteins A, B, C, D SP-A, SP-B, SP-C, SP-D
technetium, radiolabeled 99Tc (most common radioisotope)
transforming growth factor-beta TGF-β
tumor necrosis factor-alpha TNF-α
2,3-diphosphoglycerate 2,3-DPG
unfractionated heparin UFH or UF Heparin
xenon, inert gas, radiolabeled 133Xe (most common radioisotope)
Blood, RBC, and hemoglobin-related
carbaminohemoglobin HbCO2
carboxyhemoglobin HbCO
hemoglobin A, F, S, etc Hb-A, Hb-F, Hb-S
hematocrit or packed red cell volume hct (%)
hemoglobin concentration in blood [Hb] (g/dL or g%)
mean red cell hemoglobin concentration MCHC (%)
mean red cell hemoglobin content MCH (pg/cell)
mean red cell volume MCV (fL or μm3)
methemoglobin metHb
oxygen dissociation curve ODC
pH, arterial or mixed venous pHa, pH
red blood cell(s) RBC(s)
red cell count in whole blood #RBC/μL
Diagnostic techniques, procedures, professional entities, and locations
acid-fast bacillus (organisms), stain AFB, AFB stain
activated partial thromboplastin time aPTT (sec)
adaptive support servo-ventilation ASV
American College of Sports Medicine ACSM
American Thoracic Society (guidelines, etc) ATS
anteriorñposterior or anteroposterior (as a view) AP
anti-neutrophil cystoplasmic antibody (study) ANCA
arterial blood gas sample ABG(s)
average volume-assured pressure support vent AVAPS
bilevel positive airway pressure ventilation BiPAP
bronchoalveolar lavage (fluid) BAL (BALF)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC
colony-forming unit(s), as of bacteria CFU
computed tomography CT
continuous positive airway pressure ventilation CPAP
directly observed therapy (as for TB treatment) DOT
electrocardiogram, electrocardiography ECG
emergency room, emergency department ER, ED
Environmental Protection Agency EPA
European Respiratory Society (guidelines, etc) ERS
extracorporeal membrane oxygenation ECMO
fluorescence polarization FP
foam stability index (of surfactant) FSI
fractional excretion of nitric oxide FeNO
genioglossus advancement + hyoid myotomy + suspension GAHMS
Global Initiative for Obstructive Lung Disease GOLD
high resolution computed tomography HRCT
immunoreactive trypsinogen IRT
inspiratory positive airway pressure ventilation IPAP
intensive care unit ICU
international normalized ratio (for coag assays) INR
laser-assisted uvulopalatoplasty LAUP
lecithin/sphingomyelin ratio (amniotic) L/S
likelihood ratio, positive or negative +LR, −LR
lower limit(s) of normal range LLN
magnetic resonance imaging, functional MRI, fMRI
mechanical ventilation MV
[methacholine] inducing a 20% decline in FEV1 PC20
National Asthma Education & Prevention Program NAEPP
National Health & Nutrition Examination Survey III NHANES-III
non-invasive positive pressure ventilation NIPPV
parts per billion (as for a rare gas species) ppb
periodic acid-Schiff (reagent stain) PAS
positron emission spectrometry PET
positive end-expiratory pressure PEEP
positive pressure during expiration ventilation EPAP
posterior to anterior (as a view) PA
Prospective Investigation of Pulmonary Embolism Diagnosis Trial PIOPED Trial
prothrombin time PT (sec)
pulmonary arterial catheter (Swan-Ganz) PAC
pulmonary function test or testing(s) PFT(s)
rapid shallow breathing index RSBI
spontaneous breathing trial SBT
saturation with oxygen, arterial by oximetry Sao2 (%)
saturation with oxygen, mixed venous by oximetry So2 (%)
sustained-release (medications) SR
transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt TIPS
uvulopalatopharyngoplasty UPPP
ventilation/perfusion lung scan V/Q scan
video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery VATS
World Health Organization WHO
Diseases, conditions, and syndromes
acute interstitial pneumonia AIP
acute lung injury ALI
acute mountain sickness AMS
acute respiratory distress syndrome ARDS
allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis ABPA
benign asbestos pleural effusion BAPE
bronchopulmonary dysplasia BPD
carcinoma in situ CIS
central sleep apnea CSA
Cheyne-Stokes respiration CSR
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease COPD
coal worker's pneumoconiosis CWP
community-acquired pneumonia CAP
complete blood count CBC
complex sleep apnea syndrome CompSAS
congenital cystic adenomatoid malformation CCAM
congenital central alveolar hypoventilation syndrome CCAHS
congestive heart failure CHF
cryptogenic organizing pneumonia COP
cystic fibrosis CF
cystic fibrosis-related diabetes mellitus CFRDM
deep vein (or venous) thrombosis DVT
desquamative interstitial pneumonitis DIP
diffuse alveolar damage (a pathology diagnosis) DAD
diffuse alveolar hemorrhage (a clinical diagnosis) DAH
disseminated intravascular coagulation DIC
distal intestinal obstruction syndrome DIOS
environmental tobacco smoke ETS
Epstein-Barr virus EBV
heparin-induced thrombocytopenia HIT
high altitude pulmonary edema HAPE
human immunodeficiency virus HIV
human papilloma virus HPV
idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis IPF
interstitial lung disease(s) ILD(s)
Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome LEMS
lymphangioleiomyomatosis LAM
lymphoid interstitial pneumonia LIP
methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus MRSA
multiple drug resistant-organism MDR-organism
multiple organ dysfunction syndrome MODS
Mycobacterium avium complex MAC
Mycobacterium tuberculosis MTB
neonatal respiratory distress syndrome neonatal RDS or nRDS
nonspecific interstitial pneumonia NSIP
obesity-hypoventilation syndrome OHS
obstructive sleep apnea OSA
occupational asthma OA
patent ductus arteriosus PDA
patent foramen ovale PFO
progressive massive fibrosis PMF
pulmonary alveolar proteinosis PAP
pulmonary arterial hypertension PHT
pulmonary embolism, emboli PE
respiratory bronchiolitis-interstitial lung disease RB-ILD
respiratory syncytial virus RSV
sleep-related hypoventilation/hypoxemic syndrome SRH
squamous cell carcinoma SCCA
syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone hypersecretion SIADH
systemic inflammatory response syndrome SIRS
systemic lupus erythematosus SLE
thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura TTP
tuberculosis TB
usual interstitial pneumonia UIP
venous thromboembolism VTE
ventilator-associated lung injury VALI
ventilator-associated pneumonia VAP
Physiological functions, processes, and measurements
acute hypoxic pressor response AHPR
alveolar capillary endothelial surface area SC (in cm2 or m2)
alveolar epithelial surface area SA (in cm2 or m2)
alveolar septal barrier thickness, harmonic mean τs (in μm)
alveolar ventilation rate A (L/min)
alveolar ventilation/perfusion ratio A/Q̇ (dimensionless)
anterior-posterior axis or direction (as an x-ray) AP
apnea-hypopnea index AHI (scorable events/h)
blood transfer conductance coefficient for CO ΘCO
body mass index, equal to weight/(height)2 BMI (in SI units, kg/m2)
body temperature/pressure (37°C, PB,100% RH) BTPS
carbon dioxide production rate Aco2 (mL/min or L/h)
cardiac output Q̇ (L/min)
compliance, as of lung tissue or vasculature ΔV/ΔP (mL or L/mm Hg or cm H2O)
dead space ventilation rate D (L/min)
diffusivity, Krogh's coefficient for gas x DX
exercise-induced arterial hypoxemia EIAH
filtration coefficient of permeability K
fractional composition of gas "Xy" FXy (a decimal from 0.0 to 1.0)
lung diffusive capacity for CO DLCO
maximal oxygen consumption rate V̇o2max (mL/min or L/h)
membrane diffusive capacity for CO DMCO
oxygen consumption rate V̇o2 (mL/min or L/h)
peak expiratory fl ow (rate) PEF(R) (mL or L/sec)
polysomnogram PSG
protein reflection coefficient (Starling's equation) σ(range = 0.0 – 1.0)
pulmonary vascular resistance PVR (mm Hg/L/min)
rapid eye movement sleep, or non relative humidity REM, NREM RH (%)
respiratory disturbance index RDI (scorable events/h)
respiratory effort-related arousal(s) RERA(s)
respiratory quotient R
shunt fraction of cardiac output S/Q̇T(%)
six-minute walk test 6-MWT
standard temperature/pressure (0°C, 1 atm, dry) STPD
surface tension, as in alveolus T
systemic vascular resistance SVR (mm Hg/L/min)
total ventilation rate, also "minute ventilation" E (L/min)
viscosity, as of a gas in Poiseuille equation η
Pressure (all types, in mm Hg or cm H2O)
airway, critical opening PCO
airway, if "intratracheal" preferred PIT
airway, normal internal PAW
airway, peak as during MV PPEAK
airway, plateau as during MV PPLAT
airway, positive end-expiratory PEEP
alveolar (total) PA
atmosphere (unit of pressure) atm
barometric, ambient PB
carbon dioxide Pco2
carbon dioxide, alveolar partial PAco2
carbon dioxide, arterial partial Paco2
carbon dioxide, end-expiratory partial PÉco2
carbon dioxide, expired PEco2
carbon dioxide, inspired PIco2
carbon dioxide, mean expiratory PĒco2
carbon dioxide, mixed venous blood Pco2
colloid osmotic, of blood proteins πMV
colloid osmotic, of interstitial proteins πPMV
intrapleural PIP
nitrogen PN2
oxygen Po2
oxygen, alveolar–arterial gradient or difference (A – a)Po2
oxygen, alveolar capillary PCo2
oxygen, alveolar end-capillary PĆo2
oxygen, alveolar partial PAo2
oxygen, arterial partial Pao2
oxygen, arterial saturation by oximetry Sao2 (%)
oxygen, inspired PIo2
oxygen, mixed venous partial Po2
oxygen, mixed venous saturation by oximetry So2 (%)
oxygen, to half-oxygenate Hb P50
pulmonary arterial blood PPA
pulmonary artery wedge (by PAC) PPW
pulmonary capillary or microvascular PMV
pulmonary peri-microvascular or interstitial PPMV
pulmonary venous blood PPV
systemic blood, diastolic DP
systemic blood, mean MAP
systemic blood, systolic SP
Vital signs
cardiac output Q̇(L/min)
heart or pulse rate HR(b/min)
predicted body weight, often "ideal" PBW(kg)
respiratory frequency f(breaths/min) (note italics)
temperature, ambient environmental in Celsius TA(°C)
temperature, body or rectal in Celsius TB(°C)
Volume (all types) and related measurements
alveolar capillary blood VC(mL)
alveolar gas VA(mL or L)
dead space VD(mL or L)
dead space/tidal, ratio VD/VT (dimensionless)
expiratory reserve ERV (mL or L)
forced expiratory in "x" seconds FEVx, as in FEV1 (mL or L)
forced vital capacity FVC (mL or L)
functional residual capacity FRC (mL or L)
inspiratory reserve IRV (mL or L)
length of a structure, as an airway l(note italics)
minimal lung tissue, collapsed and airless VMIN (mL or L)
radius of curvature, as an alveolus r(note italics)
residual lung RV(mL or L)
slow vital capacity SVC(mL or L)
tidal VT(mL or L)
total lung capacity TLC(mL or L)
vital capacity of the lung VC(mL or L)

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