It’s easy to assume that the Latin used in Dutch medical texts will be the same in English, but this is in fact often not the case. Abbreviations in particular can be incomprehensible to English speakers, even doctors.
The only Latin that really remains in medical English is the names for the bones: tibia, fibula, scapula, sternum and so forth are correct. Pretty much everything else should be anglicized and abbreviations expanded (or equivalents found). Common culprits are:
- m. or musculus: m. obliquus externus abdominalis => external oblique abdominal muscle
- m. or morbus: m. Bechterew = Bechterew’s disease => ankylosing spondylitis
- n. or nervus: n. tibialis => tibial nerve
- a. or arteria: a. mesenterica inferior => inferior mesenteric artery
- p.o. (per os) => by mouth
- p.r.n. (pro re nata) => as needed
- q.d. (quaqua die) => daily, per day
- …and many, many more
The Latin itself quite often gets botched as well, by the way. If you’re a purist. Plural and genitive forms regularly get mangled. So much for my O-level…
Prevalence: moderate. Restricted to particular types of document, of course. Medical reports, prescriptions, medical insurance claims, pharmaceutical texts, and so forth.
Frequency: very high. My heart sinks when I come across the first such issue because it’s not uncommon for there to be dozens more.
Native: no. Even the medics won’t know what’s going on in some obscure cases. So leave alone and hope isn’t a valid option.