General Vocabulary English

Medical Environment | Taking the medical history | Physical Examination | Tests & Medication


  • General
  • Head,
    Eyes, ENT
  • Heart,
  • Abdomen,
  • Skin,
  • Musculo-
  • Gynaecology
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I am going to give you a physical examination.
Would you mind taking off your clothes [except your pants/underwear and bra]?
You can put on this hospital gown. When you are done/finished, make yourself comfortable on the examination table. I'll be back in a few minutes.
I am going to … listen to your heart / check your blood pressure / take your temperature
Please lie (down) on your back.
Please lie (down) on your stomach/belly.
Please lie (down) on the stretcher / examination table / table.
Please put your arms beside you.
Fold your hands over your chest and pull up your knees (to your chest).
Be sure to let me know when it hurts.
Does it hurt you (here)?
Show me where it hurts, please.
Does that hurt? (when palpating)
Please turn your head to the side.
Please turn your head to the other side.
Please follow my finger without moving or turning your head.
Now we are finished.
Is there anything else that is bothering you? Is there anything that you have noticed? 
You can get dressed now. 
I will be back in just a few minutes.
Please stand up and put your clothes back on.
Thank you, I am finished now.


Frequent Complaints
to feel congested
to sneeze
to have a cold / a runny nose / a stuffy nose / a cough / a sore throat / a tonsil infection / swollen tonsils / sinus congestion
to have watery eyes
to be hoarse / hoarsenes / to lose one’s voice
to have white specks / patches in the mouth
to have a coated tongue
to have a toothache / a cavity / a lose crown / a filling / bleeding gums
to be near-sighted / to be far-sighted / notice changes in your vision
cataracts / glaucoma
to be hard of hearing / to wear a hearing aid
to have ringing in your ears / hearing loss / tinnitus
Sample Medical History Questions  
Do you have a lot of mucous in your nose?
Stick out your tongue and say, “aaahhh.”
Press your tongue to the roof of your mouth.
Tilt your head up / down, please.
Can you swallow for me?
Please turn your head to the side.
Touch your chin to your chest.
I am going to check your eyes now. Please look straight at me/over my shoulder.
Look at my finger and follow it with your eyes.
Keep your eyes focused on that spot.
Your throat looks a bit irritated.


Frequent Complaints
coronary heart disease
heart attack
heart insufficiency
heart murmur
high blood pressure
heart arrhythmias
valve stenosis and valve insufficiency
septum defects
Sample Medical History Questions
Chest pain, tightening feeling = angina pectoris
Have you ever had any chest pain? Where?
Dependent on whether working, breathing, sitting/lying in a certain position, eating certain foods?
No improvement with nitrolingual or other medications?
Where does it hurt? Behind the sternum/breastbone, in the stomach?
Where does the pain radiate? To the arms, lower jaw, back?
Do you have pain while sitting or while doing activities?
Do you have sudden sweats? Do you break into sudden sweats?
Are you nauseated? Do you feel bad?
Do you have to vomit/throw up?
Do you have heartburn or acid reflux?
heart beat, dizziness (vertigo), fainting spells
Do you notice any irregularity of heart beat or any palpitations?
When? During physical activity or when sitting?
Do you have a shortness of breath?
Have you ever lost consciousness? 
Are you dizzy or do you see black spots?
Do you have to go to the bathroom at night? How often?
Do you have fluid in your legs? Do you have swollen legs? Do you have edema?
Are any of your limbs swollen? Hands, feet, legs?
How long have they been swollen like this?
Are you a diabetic? Do you have high blood sugar?
Do you have high blood pressure? Do you know if you have high blood pressure?
Do you smoke?
Did you have congenital heart problems as a child?
Did you often have tonsil infections as a child?
Did you have rheumatic fever as a child?
Do you have a pacemaker?
Let me take/feel your pulse.
I am going to take your blood pressure now.
I am going to listen to your heart now.
Frequent Complaints
runny nose
hoarseness (to lose one's voice)
sore throat
tonsil infection / swollen tonsils 
lung inflammation / pneumonia
chronic bronchitis
Sample Medical History Questions
Do you have shortness of breath? While sitting? While walking? While climbing up/walking up the stairs?
Do you have a cough?
Since when? How long have you been coughing? When did it start? Longer than 3 weeks ago? Suddenly? 
Did you swallow something?
Do you have a dry cough? Irritation when coughing?
Do you have expectorations? Do you cough up anything?
What is the color of your expectorations? Whitish-gray, yellowish-green, blood?
Do you cough up blood?
Do you wheeze?
Do you have any pain or discomfort while breathing? While taking a deep breath? While inhaling and exhaling/breathing in and out?
Do you work in a coal mine or with asbestos?
Do you take high blood pressure medication/tablets/pills/medicine? 
Do you regularly take/use aspirin?
Are you hoarse? 
Do you have problems/troubles with hoarseness?
(Please) Take a deep breath and hold it.
(Please) Now you can breathe normally again.
Cough. Cough again.


Sample Medical History Questions
Do you have body aches/pains, stomachache, stomach cramps, appetite, no appetite or diarrhea?
Do you feel full all the time? 
Do you have a bloated feeling? Are you bloated?
Do you have constipation? Are you constipated?
Do you have a fever? Have you had a fever?
Do you feel sick to your stomach? Are you nauseated? Do you have nausea?
Have you vomited? Have you thrown up?
Have you lost weight recently? Have you gained weight recently?
Do you have blood in your stool/feces?
Do you have black stool/feces?
Have you had different colored stool/feces than normal/usual?
Do you have (any) pain?
Where does it hurt?
Where does the pain radiate/spread to?
Do you have pain when resting? While performing physical activity?
Do you have pain after eating? 
Do you have pain during the day or night?
How often do you have this pain?
How long does the pain last?
Quality of the pain? Describe the pain?
visceral pain: dull, stabbing, cramping + nausea, 
Do you have the pain after eating certain foods?
Does the pain go away after eating certain foods?
In the last hour, have you eaten mushrooms, eggs, mayonnaise, chicken or something else that might have been special?
Are you allergic to certain foods?
Which foods disagree with you?
Do you get heartburn?
Do you have indigestion often?
Do you go to the bathroom/have bowel movements more frequently / more often than normal?
How are your stools? Are they regular? Are you constipated? Do you have diarrhea?
Are your bowel movements more or less than normal?
Has anything changed about your stool / bowel movements recently?
Have you noticed their color?
Did the color of your stool/bowel movements change recently (black, with blood, bloody, white)?
Do you have abdominal/stomach pain?
Do you have pain in your stomach?
What is the consistency of your stool/bowel movements? Is it hard, soft, with mucous, runny, liquid or watery?
How much do you drink (per day)?
Do you have pain or a burning sensation when you urinate / when you go to the bathroom?
What color is your urine?
Is your urine bloody or dark? Is it (not) clear?
Do you have to go to the bathroom often at night?
Do you sometimes accidentally urinate on yourself? Are you incontinent?
Please lie (down) on your back.
Please lie (down) on your stomach/belly.
Please lie (down) on the stretcher/examination table/table.
Please put your arms next to you.
Fold your hands over your chest and pull up your knees (to your chest).
Be sure to let me know when it hurts.
Does it hurt you (here)?
Show me where it hurts, please.
Does that hurt? (when palpating)


Frequent Complaints
itchy, pruritus
boil, furuncle
to scratch
lump, bump
sting (for example bee) 
scrape (a scraped knee)
bug bite
a tender lymph node/swollen glands
to break out in a rash
to have a burning sensation
Sample Medical History Questions
Have you ever noticed any swollen glands or lymph nodes?
Have you had any lumps in that part of your neck?
Have you noticed any moles?
Does it itch?
Nervous System  
Frequent Complaints
cerebral palsy
prickling sensation, tickling or tingling, pins and needles
writhing movements
The nerve that supplies the muscles of the leg.
to lose feeling in a leg
Sample Medical History Questions
How would you rate your memory, attention span?
Have you had any changes in your vision (sight), double vision (diplopia)? Stiffness in your neck?
How long have you had these headaches?
Does the headache wake you up at night?
Did you fall down? Did you pass out/faint?
Did you get dizzy or trip?
Does your foot feel like it has gone to sleep?
Are you sore at all if I push on your cheeks or your forehead like that?
Look straight ahead.
Follow my finger with your eyes.
Can you feel this?
I want you to close your eyes and tell me when you feel me touching you. 
Does it feel sharp/blunt over here?
Does this feel about the same? Does it feel the same on both sides?
Bite down hard, clench your teeth.
Don't let me push/pull you.
Close your eyes really tight.
Show me all your teeth.
Smile and frown.
Raise your eyebrows up, wrinkle your forehead.
Stick your tongue against your cheek, against my finger and push.
Move your shoulders up and down, shrug.
Look at the tip of your nose.
I want you to walk in a straight line, heel to toe, across the room.
Try to relax, let your muscles relax and try not to tighten up. 
I'm going to test your reflexes now. 
Stand up, put your heels together, hold out both arms, palms up, and now close your eyes for a few minutes.


Frequent Complaints
to pull a muscle
to sprain a leg
to tear a ligament
My leg feels stiff.
to get a cast, splint
a crutch
to have gout
a broken/fractured leg
a torn meniscus
Please straighten out/stretch/raise/lower your arm
Could you bend down?
Bend your knees.
I am going to bend your toes back, now straighten your leg.
I am going to ask you to lift up this leg for me. And now hold it up.
Don't let me push it down.
Pull back, toward you.
Hold your arms up to your side and don't let me push them down.
Turn your hands over, make a fist.
Are you sore at all if I push on your back like that?
Keep your knees and feet steady and firm.
Would you please roll over on to your tummy?
Point your toes up toward your head.
Hold your fingers apart and don't let me push them together.
Grasp my finger and don't let me pull it through.
Hold your thumb and your pinky together and don't let me pull through.


Sample Medical History Questions
menstruation/period – menstrual cycle/menstrual period
Do you have regular periods?
How long does your period last?
When did you have your last period? When was your last menstrual period?
Do you have any problems during menstruation?
Do you take medication for menstrual problems? Do you take medicine for relieving problems associated with your period?
Do you have spotting between periods?
How old were you when your period started?
When did you stop having your period?
Do you have heavy bleeding? 
Does your period last longer than five days?
sexual intercourse – intercourse – sex – to have sex – to have intercourse – to make love – sexual contact – sexual partners - partners
How often do you have sexual intercourse per week?
Do you have intercourse frequently with different/varying partners?
Do you experience pain while/when having sex? 
Have you ever been pregnant?
Do you have children? How many children do you have?
Have you ever had an abortion?
Have you ever had a miscarriage?
Is it possible that you are pregnant (at the moment)?
Have you ever had unprotected sex?
Were there any complications during your last pregnancy?
When did you last have your period? When was the last time you had your period?
When was the last day of your menstrual cycle?
How long did your period last? How strong was the bleeding?
Do you have a gynaecologist that you see/visit regularly?
When was your last pap smear?
Do you go regularly to your gynaecologist  for check-ups and pap smears?
Are there any problems with the pregnancy?
Do you have a steady partner? Are you in a steady relationship?
Are there any hereditary diseases in your family?
Do you have diabetes (sugar), high blood pressure, kidney problems, circulatory/heart problems, thyroid trouble (over function or under function of the thyroid)?
Is there anyone in your family who has these diseases?
contraception/birth control
Are you taking “the pill?” Which one? What is the name of the pill?
Do you use condoms?
Do you use inter-uterine devices (IUDs), for example, the spiral?
Do you take the “the morning after pill”? Have you taken “the morning after pill?”
Do you use the “natural” method according to the calendar or the temperature method?
Would you like information on birth control methods?
Do you have (any) vaginal discharge?
What color is the discharge?
Do you have fever? 
Do you have any itching?
Do you feel any burning when you urinate?
Is it painful to have sexual intercourse?
Do you have pain during your menstrual cycle?
Is it painful all the time (always)?
Do you have anemia? Do you suffer from anemia?
Have you ever had a sexually transmitted disease? What about one of your sexual partners?
Have you ever had an AIDS test taken?
Do you know if you are HIV positive?
Have you noticed a knot/knots in your breast?
Do you regularly perform self-breast exam(ination)s?
Since the start of menopause, have you had a menstrual cycle or vaginal discharge?

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