Common medical misspellings

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 10 Jun 2020

It is important that we avoid misspellings on Radiopaedia to ensure that the site is easy to read and trusted. There are a number of radiology/medical words we find are commonly misspelt, even by native English speakers:

  • -penia (word suffix)
    • thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, neutropenia, etc., are the correct spellings
    • spelling any of these words with "-paenia" instead of "penia" is incorrect; these are not British variants
  • azygos vein
    • azygos vein is the correct spelling
    • azygous is incorrect
  • diverticula
    • diverticula is the only acceptable plural of diverticulum
    • diverticulae/diverticuli are incorrect
  • epididymides
    • epididymides is the correct plural for epididymis
    • epididymi/epididymises are incorrect
  • radiopaque
    • this is commonly misspelt radio-opaque, and historically is seen in some texts, but if you say the word out loud, it is clear that phonetically this is the correct spelling
  • septa
    • septa is the only acceptable plural of septum
    • septae/septi are incorrect

In addition to the above there are also several words for which Radiopaedia has decided to use a specific form. Please see words we never use for more detail.

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