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  1. #1
    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Default Nonunion

    Does anybody know the translation of nonunion in the context of bone fractures?

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    Hi Gabriel,
    I have been doing some research, and to be honest, this is the best I have come up with:
    Delayed Union: Unión retardada - toma más tiempo de los usual pero al final sana nonunion: Que no suelde, el hueso no sana y necesita algún tratamiento especial

    Does this help at all?

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    Default Here's a suggestion

    Hi Gabriel,

    The term nonunion means a discontinuity in a tissue. In Spanish, this can be referred to as a "fractura" or "descontinuidad", though when referring to a bone after surgery/reduction, descontiguidad is acceptable (especially if it is a radiology report).

    Saludos,

    Jason

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    Smile

    Hi Jason,
    Sorry, I think it's either "discontinuidad" or "descontigüidad" (and I should check, but I'm quite positive the latter isn't a real word... But I'm not a doctor so I don't know if it's used in medicine...).

    Anyway, I have a question, if you don't mind. Why would you translate "nonunion" as "fractura", when there's the word "fracture" in English? Wouldn't that mean they're two different things? Just asking...

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    Hi Maria,

    I'm not sure if descontiguidad is a "word", as physicians are fond of making up there own vocabulary, but I see it on radiology reports all the time. Also, since most of my career has been spent in the north of Mexico, it could be one of those Tjuanismos that got mixed into the language and will need another 100 years before it shows up in a dictionary. I just spent a week translating a bunch of charts from Barcelona and they were filled with terms and abbreviations that didn't show up in any medical dictionary, English, Spanish, or Catalan. Many of them didn't even show up on Google (in ANY context).

    As for the use of nonunion, it really depends on the context in which it is being used. A nonunion is just that, the lack of a union where there should be one. A new nonunion in a bone is a fracture. However, if it is a nonunion after a sufficient amount of time has passed since the original fracture, it becomes a "delayed union." Give it sufficient time and it becomes a pseudoarthrosis. All of these terms can still be classified as nonunions. It depends on the context.

    Unfortunately for translators, there are a lot of false cognates in medicine. Context is everything. Since medicine is such a closed community with its own jargon (often done so intentionally to keep people from understanding what we are saying. . . en serio!), you have to understand the source and the target jargon to arrive at a good translation.

    As many translators have noticed, the language used in a medical texbook or journal article (which can be cross referenced pretty well using a good medical dictionary and Google) is very different from the language used in patient charts. Many terms and abbreviations are only used in certain regions and can be almost impossible to translate. I know because it happens to me all the time. The problem is so bad that I have glossaries that I have compiled for almost every Spanish speaking country and I still have to email colleagues in different regions when I hit a snag. Many attempts have been made to standardize medical language, but when you have this many egos involved, it's a lost cause.

    Saludos!

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    Hi Jason!
    Well, that sure was a great explanation to my simple question...
    Thanks for taking the time to reply to me.
    I expect to specialize in Medicine to be able to translate journal articles mostly (hopefully I won't have to deal with charts or reports... Though, on second thoughts, I guess I could handle lab reports since I'm a chemist...) once I get my degree in translation studies, which I don't have yet. Still, I've translated many articles in my area of expertise (chemistry, of course...) and luckily it's been pretty easy for me since I know the two languages quite well.
    Anyway... Thanks again...
    Saludos... See you around...

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