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Courses open for VSPNer registration

STAF125-0110 : Equine Medical Terminology

Kim Sykes, CVT

January 4-February 1, 2010
Real Time Sessions: Friday evenings, January 8, 15, and 22, 2010; 10:00pm-11:00pm ET (USA) *one hour sessions


Medical Terminology is an important part of daily activities in any veterinary practice. Correct use of terminology in the veterinary workplace enhances client education and practice-wide communication. Participants will understand the concept of breaking down a medical term into its components of root words, prefixes and suffixes. Terminology unique to equine medicine will be introduced in the context in which is can be used. The participant will be able to "decode" medical terms, as well as demonstrate the correct equine medical terms for many signs and symptoms unique to the horse.

The course will consist of three (3) real time interactive sessions of sixty (60) minutes each covering the basics of root words, prefixes and suffixes; basic words, anatomy and diseases; and more advanced equine only terms to aid the veterinary support staff in corresponding professionally with equine veterinarians and in medical records. Homework will reinforce the handouts and real time sessions; a final exam will be available online to test the participants' comprehension the material covered.

All members of the veterinary support staff may join the course and its discussions; this course is focused towards front desk/client service staff, veterinary assistants, and veterinary technician students or veterinary technicians transitioning into an equine medicine career.

Upon completion of this course, the participant should be able to

TEXTBOOKS: There are no required texts for this course; however, the instructor has supplied a list of suggested references below: COURSE OUTLINE:

Week 1: The basics of equine veterinary medical terminology
Content: The basics of veterinary medical terminology including decodable terms, the basic rules for combining terminology, non-decodable terms, acronyms, eponyms, symbols and abbreviations, signs and symptoms. We will also specifically cover terms for directional terms, including those used in radiologic and surgical positioning.

Week 2: The musculoskeletal, hematology tests, and neurologic functions
Content: The musculoskeletal system including joints and soft tissue structures are reviewed in common equine contexts, Blood tests, tools of the trade and common abbreviations related to blood studies will be covered. Neurologic symptoms and causes with related terminology will be discussed.

Week 3: Common words and phrases used in equine medicine which do not have their construction based in traditional medical terminology.
Content: These words and phrases are used by both clients and medical staff alike. Understand the true meaning of the terminology, the disease process to which it is related, and the appropriate medical term if one exists.

LIBRARY MATERIALS: Library materials will be made available prior to the topic week so participants will have plenty of time to prepare for the real time sessions and discussion.

MESSAGE BOARD DISCUSSIONS: Message board discussions regarding the topic presented will begin on the day the course opens and continue for one week following the last real time session. These discussions will be held in the VSPN CE course area.


$60 ($54.00 early bird special if registered before December 21, 2009).
*Students currently enrolled in and taking at least 2 classes or 5 units at an AVMA accredited or CAAHT approved Veterinary Technician Program may be eligible to receive a 50% discount off the regular rate for this course (upon verification of student status). You must include the following information in the comments section of the CE enrollment form in order to be eligible for this discount: your program director's name and contact information (email/phone) and school name.

** NOTE: Enrollment will be closed when the maximum number of participants is reached or at 5pm ET the day of the first real time session.

**For more on how online CE works see the VSPN Participant's Resource Center


  1. Each enrollee must individually be a registered member of VSPN or VIN ( Membership in VSPN is free; VIN membership includes VSPN membership.
  2. To enroll in any VSPN CE course click on the ENROLL NOW link below the course title on the right side of the page at
  3. Each enrollee must be able to receive emails from and addresses. This is our major form of communication with participants. It is highly recommended that course participants use their own, personal emails rather than clinic/hospital email addresses.
  4. VIN Member veterinarians SHOULD NOT register for their staff. Please have the staff member register through VSPN. Please email if you have questions.
Note: "This course has been approved for continuing education credits in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB RACE approval; however participants should be aware that some boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or restrictions on certain methods of delivery of continuing education. Call VSPN CE at 1-800-700-4636 for further information." (Attendees are encouraged to check with their licensing jurisdiction(s) for information regarding recognition by their board).
COURSE WITHDRAWAL AND REFUND POLICY: Withdrawal prior to the listed start date of a course entitles the registrant to a complete refund or a credit toward a future VSPN or VIN CE course, whichever is preferred. Withdrawal within 1 week after the listed start date (i.e. including no more than one real-time session) entitles the registrant to a credit toward any future VIN CE course. (Does not apply to courses with only one real-time session.) After the first real-time session, a registrant may withdraw due to special circumstances and receive prorated credit towards a future VIN course. These requests will be handled on an individual basis. The amount of the prorated credit will be determined based on 65% of the time remaining in the course at the time of withdrawal. It is not possible to withdraw retroactively.
Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you call the VIN office at 1-800-700-INFO (4636).
** For More Information on VSPN's upcoming CE Courses, check out

Nanette R. Walker Smith, M.Ed., RVT, CVT, LVT
VSPN Content Director & CE Coordinator

VSPN CE Services:
1-800-846-0028 or 1-530-756-4881
Charlotte Waack (; ext 193
Chris Upchurch (; ext 197
Darci Palmer (; ext 179
Debbie Bess (; ext 178
Nanette Walker Smith (; ext 187


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