Glossary of Avian Medical Terms – Prefixes and Suffixes

Main Article: Avian Medical Terms by Jeannine Miesle, MA, Allied Member, Association of Avian Veterinarians


A, an, ana: without, no

Ab: away from

Ad: toward

Aer/Aero: oxygen/air

Adipo: fat

Anem: blood condition

Anti: against

Auto: self, within

Blephar: eyellids

Chezein: feces

Copr: feces

Chrome/chromo: color

Cyan: blue discoloration

Cyto: cell

Dys: bad, painful, difficult

Ecto: outside

Endo: inside, within

Epi: above

Eu: good, easy, normal

Ex,exo: without, out of, outside, away from

Extra: outside

Hetero: other, dissimilar

Histo: tissue


Hyper: more than normal

Hypo: less than normal

Illi: hip

Infra: below, beneath

Inter: between

Intra: within

Isch: to hold back


Leu/leuko: white

Leio/lio: smooth

Lipid/lipo: fat

Meso: middle

Meta: beyond

Myco: fungus

Myelo: bone marrow, where body makes cells

Myxo: mucous, slime

Neo: new

Oligo: scant, little

Onco: tumor, mass

Onycho: nails

Pan: all

Para: alongside, associated with, closely resembling true form, beyond, outside of, faulty, irregular, abnormal, accessory to, against, apart from

Per: throughout

Peri: around, before, during, after

Phagia: eat, swallow

Poly: many, excessive

Pre: before

Post: after

Proprio: owns own

Sub: beneath, below, nearly, almost, under, less

Super, supra: above, beyond, excessive

Thelo: nipple, thin membrane

Thymo: thymus, mind, soul, emotions

Tono:tone, tension

Trans: across

Ultra: above, increased, more than normal

Vaso: vessel or duct, circulatory

“Pertaining To” suffixes, “as in”

-ac: cardiac, heart

-al: renal, kidney

-an: ovarian, ovary

-ar: lumbar, lower back 

-are: alimentary, GI track

-eal: laryngeal, larynx

-ic: enteric, intestines

-ous: skin

-tic: nephrotic, kidneys

-prandial: a meal


-algia: pain

-ase: enzyme ending

-blast: immature stage in cellular development before appearance of definitive characteristics of the cell;

-centesis: surgical puncture to remove fluid or gas

-cyte: cell -dynia: pain

-ectasis: distending, stretching

-ectomy: surgical procedure to remove organ

-emia: blood condition

-gram: record of

-graph: recording instrument

-graphy: written, studied about, recording procedure

-iasis: parasite infestation; name preceeds suffix, e.g., trichomoniasis

-itis: inflammation

-lith: body or mass

-lithiasis: presence of stones

-lysis: break down, loosen, decomposition

-logy: study of

-malacia: abnormal softening

-megaly: enlargement

-mycin: substance derived from bacteria

-oma: tumor, neoplasm, or specific tissue which precedes suffix, e.g., lipomas, fatty tumor

-ometry: measurement

-osis:/otic: increased number, abnormal actions, conditions or states, disorders

-osis: disease caused by organism whose name precedes it, e.g., salmonellosis

-pathy: disease or condition of

-penia: deficiency, reduced number

-pexy: suture to stabilize, e.g., gastropexy: suture to abdominal wall

-philia: attraction for, increased numbers

-plasia: formation, development, growth of tissue and cell numbers; change is size or tissue and cells; describes problems with tissue formation

-plasty: surgical repairs, e.g., rhinoplasty, repair of nose

-poietic/poiesis: formation

-ptosis: drooping, dropping down, e.g., prolapsis

-rrhage/rrhagia: bursting forth

-rrhaphy: to suture

-rrhea: flow, discharge

-rrhexis: rupture

-sclerosis: abnormal hardening

-scope: procedure to visually examine

-stomy: incision, cut into

-thymia: condition of the mind

-trophy: formation, development, increase in size of tissue

-tropic: having an affinity for or attraction to

-um: structure

-uro,-uria: of urinary tract, urine’

Find Your Local Avian Veterinarian

by Jeannine Miesle, MA Allied Member, Association of Avian Veterinarians

Index of Bird DiseasesSymptoms and Potential CausesBird Species and Diseases They are Most Susceptible to
Photo of author

Jeannine Miesle

Jeannine Miesle, M.A., M.Ed, Allied Member, Association of Avian Veterinarians is an important contributor to Beauty of Birds. Jeannine has done considerable writing, proofreading and editing for journals and newsletters over the years. She had taught English and music in the schools and presently is an organist at Bethany Church in West Chester, Ohio. She also administrates a Facebook group, The Science of Avian Health.

Jeannine takes in rescued cockatiels and presently has twelve birds. When they come to her they remain as part of her flock.