Waiting with eager anticipation for the dental hygienist to summon me, I was browsing through a magazine. Not knowing it was going to provide me with a target—er, material—I didn't especially notice its name, but it had something to do with women's health. It was obviously targeted at a demographic other than hopelessly last-century me, with its bright colored frenetic layout and breezy editorial style.
According to a snappy little article about skin health, suspicious moles, spots, or rashes were all reasons to consult your "derm." After a couple of encounters with this truncated usage, I figured out this was just-between-us-girls shorthand for the doctor a more dignified age would have called a "dermatologist."
Another article, or possibly an ad—the distinction between content and commerce wasn't clear—made me painfully aware that the professional to be consulted for reproductive and pelvic issues is now a "gyno." "Gynecologist" is so old-fashioned, not to mention hard to spell and time-consuming to text.
Presumably, a woman might also need to consult other medical specialists from time to time. A gastro, perhaps, or a surg. Even, for more serious issues, possibly a cardio or an onco. Her children, of course, would be taken to a ped or perhaps a pedia. Her parents' failing hearing might lead them to consult an audio. Those annual eye exams would be done by an optho—so much easier to pronounce than the clumsy "ophthalmologist." An ortho would be the person to see if you broke an ankle, especially if the accident happened while you were fertilizing the lawn. On occasion, it might even be necessary to see a uro or even a procto.
I didn't have a chance to find out whether any of these other professionals were mentioned in the magazine. The hygienist interrupted me before I got that far. It was my turn to see the dent.
Just in time, too. I was almost stressed enough from all the amputated English to need a visit to the psych.
(Yes, I know. We take our animals to the vet, and we've done so for years. That's different. Don't ask me how or why; it just is.)