acronym dictionary

Tue Feb 8 13:23:16 EST 1994

One of the problems with acronyms is that the same acronym can have different
meanings to different people.  I once attended a conference on sports medicine.
Most of the participants were general practitioners.  One of the talks was
given by an orthopedic surgeon who gave a breakdown of problems facing elite
athletes.  The speaker couldn't understand why the audience started to chuckle
when he mentioned that 2% of the problems were PIDs.  To an orthopedic surgeon
PID stands for prolapsed intervertebral disc, to a general practitioner it
stands for pelvic inflammatory disease.  The latter certainly has naughtier
social implications.

Barry Campbell
Molecular Ecology Laboratory
Queen's University in Kingston.

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