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Expressões médicas: falhas e acertos
Medical Expressions: Shortcomings and suitability Simônides BACELAR1, Carmem Cecília GALVÃO2, Elaine ALVES3 , Paulo TUBINO4
“Deve-se empregar as palavras na linguagem científica, com o mesmo rigor com que se empregam os símbolos em matemática” (Plácido Barbosa, Dicionário de Terminologia Médica Portuguesa, 1917).

Continuing with a series ofarticles related to scientific research and the writing of scientific articles, this issue presents an excellent work entitled Medical Expressions: Shortcomings and suitability. It discusses the fact that, although medical doctors have an excellent general culture, there are frequently imperfections in respect to the language they use in scientific papers. Often obscure and ambiguous statements andother linguistic problems impair the comprehension of these reports. Considerations about the cases presented in this report are supported by what is recommended by the majority of experts in the Portuguese language and in medical terminology. According to these scholars the following principles, among others, are recommended: (1) In language there is not right and wrong as there are distinctlevels of language. There is adequacy and inadequacy for each of these levels. (2) In language, it makes good sense to adopt flexibility. (3) The scientific language should be exact, so as not to have misunderstandings; simple, to be well comprehended and concise, to save the time of the reader and space in publications. (4) The normative grammar, owing to its formation based on the standard culture ofthe language, is adapted to the formal scientific language. (5) It is recommended to avoid terms criticized by good linguists and to use non-condemned synonyms. (6) In science, it is convenient to have only one name per item. (7) In general, follow rules, that is, proceed according to the majority of cases is preferable to the exceptions. (8) Medical slang should be avoided in formal reports. (9)Foreign words are welcome when there is a need and if there is no equivalent in Portuguese. (10) Very laconic or synthetic expressions, in which several terms are taken for granted, are often antiscientific and create misunderstandings. (11) Unnecessarily invented words (neologisms) that do not appear in dictionaries should be avoided. Although many of the principles mentioned above are pertinentto scientific reports written in English, the majority of the terms discussed in this article are specific to the Portuguese language. Many shortcomings have reference to grammatical structures, phrases or words which have been incorrectly translated into Portuguese or even to English words that have a Portuguese equivalence. Thus translation of this article to the English language seemsunnecessary and will serve no purpose.

Os médicos dispõem de excelente cultura geral, adquirida desde os cursos escolares e universitários. Apesar disso, a linguagem médica apresenta muitas imperfeições, que requerem especial esforço para reconhecer e corrigir. Nas apresentações de artigos médicos feitas por acadêmicos de Medicina no Centro de Pediatria Cirúrgica do Hospital Universitário, Universidadede Brasília, os comentários dos membros docentes de Cirurgia Pediátrica sobre os temas relatados também abrangem

atitudes inadequadas na apresentação e defeitos de linguagem médica. Como forma de apoio, foram elaboradas apostilas sobre esses itens. Uma pequena lista de expressões médicas errôneas foi organizada inicialmente. Anotações subseqüentes demonstraram que expressões errôneas, nalinguagem médica, constituem vastíssimo capítulo da Medicina, embora pobremente conhecido e divulgado. Por serem motivos de obscuridades, ambigüidades e de outros problemas de linguagem que dificultam a compreensão dos relatos, III

é recomendável conhecer e corrigir esses desalinhos. As considerações sobre os casos apresentados neste relato apóiam-se no que recomenda a maioria dos conhecedores da...
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