Radiology Medical Terminology


In addition to individual body parts and structures, systemic anatomy is a key component of radiology. Systemic anatomy is broken down into five major areas of study: angiology (vascular or lymphatic vessels); arthrology (joints); myology (muscular system); neurology (nervous system); and osteology (bones).

Anatomical Positions & Directions

The terms used to signify the body's specific position during imaging tests include erect (also referred to as vertical), lateral, oblique, prone and supine. Along those lines, there's terminology used to depict the portions and directions or side the body is in. Examples include anterior/ventrum (front), caudad (toward the feet), cephalic (toward the head), dorsum/posterior (back), inferior (below), medial (middle), lateral (away or farthest point), proximal (nearest point) and superior (above).

Imaging Tests

There's a range of radiology terms and acronyms associated with specific imaging tests. Some of the more common ones include angiocardiography, arteriogram, arthrogram, computed tomography (CT scan), computer assisted tomography (CAT scan), echocardiography, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), mammography, myelogram, positron emission tomography (PET scan), pyelogram and ultrasound.

Additional Terms

Other key terms involving radiology procedures and methods include abduction, anesthetize, atomic mass, barium, biopsy, brachytherapy, catheterization, Compton effect, contrast dye, electron volt, electrostatic field, flexion, fluorescence, ionize, irradiation, isotope, nuclear, palliative, quality factor, radiation, stereotactic, titrate and transducer. Radiology is an area of medicine centered on imaging technologies. Like other medical occupations, radiology has its own set of terms and abbreviations. Within radiology, the most frequently encountered medical terms pertain to anatomy, anatomical positions, conditions, diagnostic procedures and methods.