Monday, January 24, 2011


I promised myself I wouldn't use acronyms or abbreviations on this blog in my very first post where I get stuck in to fertility websites and the reasons they irritate me. Of course they are creeping in, especially in the comments box and I am to blame.When I began my love/hate relationship with fertility websites, (Baby Centre uk mainly), I just thought what on earth is this? Pure jargon, posts looked something like this;

Hi, POAS with FMU and BFP....OH :) !!!!! Grrr but AF showed, old witch and got BFN later. We BD'd loads this month. 

I've got a pretty good understanding of medical jargon from working in hospitals/clinics for 14 years but I was truly lost and really quite frustrated in my hunt for information in English from a distant Spanish speaking country. I google searched a few of the acronyms which just led me to other websites where people spoke the same strange language. I felt like my 90 year old Grandmother might on seeing a text message saying WTF LOL CU L8R ;), it takes me a while to translate 'text speak'.

So here are a few explained. You will see there is nothing fancy or complicated about them. What bothers me most is that there is nothing logical about them. I would particularly like to meet the meet the person who came up with number 1.

1. AF = Aunt Flo (or Flow?). Any ideas? Yes this is the bleeding at the start of a new monthly cycle, or period, on the blob, got the painters in, old witch. It's bizarrely sharing the same name as a character from Bod. That old catchphrase from the much loved children's TV programme from the 70's takes on a whole new meaning. 'Here comes.......Aunt Flo' and always spells bad news for people TTC.
2. TTC = Trying To Conceive. You can add to this..TTC #1 2yr or something similar.

3. DH/DP/OH = Darling Husband/Darling Partner/Other Half. Again, I use this on the websites but somewhere inside my stomach turns a little.

4. BFP/BFN = this one had me foxed for ages, it is Big Fat Positive/Big Fat Negative...pregnancy tests of course. It is possible to reduce the best news/worst news on a monthly basis to 3 letters BUT not until you have POAS.

5. POAS = peed on a stick

Here are some more acronyms that are not commonly found in the notes of Midwives or Obstetricians

  • 2WW - 2 Week Wait before testing
  • AKA - Also-known-as
  • PMA - Positive Mental Attitude
  • BD - Baby dance (sex)
  • BF - Boyfriend
  • BH - Braxton hicks
  • BIL - Brother-in-law
  • BTW - By the way
  • DD - Dear daughter
  • DF - Dear fiance
  • DH - Dear husband
  • DS - Dear son
  • DSD - Dear stepdaughter
  • DSS - Dear stepson
  • DW - Dear wife
  • ETA - Edited to add
  • FIL - Father-in-law
  • FT - Full-time
  • FWIW - For what it's worth
  • FYI - For your information
  • HTH- Hope this helps
  • IMHO - In my honest opinion
  • IMO - In my opinion
  • IRL - In real life
  • IYKWIM - If you know what I mean
  • JMHO - Just my honest opinion
  • LMAO - Laughing my arse off
  • LOL - Laughing out loud
  • MIL - Mother-in-law
  • MYOB - Mind your own business
  • (((Name of person))) - Hugging that person
  • OMG - Oh my god/gosh/goodness
  • OT - Off topic
  • RLT - Raspberry leaf tea
  • ROFL - Rolling on the floor laughing
  • SAHD - Stay-at-home dad
  • SAHM - Stay-at-home mum
  • SD - Sperm donor
  • SIL - Sister-in-law
  • TMI - Too much information
  • WAHD - Work-at-home dad
  • WAHM - Work-at-home mum

And some useful ones to know, that you might find in medical notes:

PG = pregnant
MC = miscarriage
OPK = ovulation predictor kit
IVF = in vitro fertilization (a 'washed sample' of the best sperm are introduced to a single egg)
ICSI = intracytoplasmic sperm injection (a more specialised form of IVF, a single sperm injected into the egg)
IUI = intrauterine insemination (a washed sample of sperm is passed into the uterus with/without a woman taking drugs to stimulate the ovaries to produce more than the normal 1-2 eggs).
HPT = home pregnancy test
-(i)ve/+(i)ve = negative/positive
DPO = days past ovulation
DPT = days past (embryo) transfer
EC = egg collection
ET = embryo transfer
CD = cycle day (1 being 1st day of light/red flow)
CM = cervical mucous
EWCM = egg white cervical mucous (a good indication of your fertile window)
BBT = basal body temperature (to help predict fertile window and luteal phase)
LP = luteal phase (second half of cycle post ovulation)
S/LLP = short/long luteal phase
LPD = luteal phase defect
HSG = hysterosalpingogram (Xray to examine uterus and patency of fallopian tubes)
HCG = human chorionic gonadotrophin (pregnancy hormone measured on HPT's with urine or in blood, with any value greater than 5 being classed as +ive).
FMU = first morning urine (when HCG levels are at their highest.

There are many more of course (apologies for any spelling errors) that have yet to feature on this blog so I will try to update it as I go. While I understand the need for abbreviations I think RLT (raspberry leaf tea) is taking things a little too far!


  1. LOL! I use some of these, especially 'dh,' when blogging, or perhaps just when commenting, not sure. I think its a way of showing you are part of the community, part of a sorority in a way.

    But I take your point that when you are blogging you assume (hope!) that your audience will be wider than just the people on the internet forums you frequent. Though IVF is quite a niche field to be honest.

  2. Know what you mean... 'DH' makes me cringe whenever I write it but it's all about speaking the same language as others online isn't it?! I should apologise now for having used any of these (except IUI, IVF.. there're just too long to write in full!) in my blog!

  3. Being part of a community is a nice way of looking at it. I suppose I don't like the idea it excludes people looking for support, I've found AF,DH,BFP is more a language for all fertility related and baby websites not just exclusive to the IVF world.

    It's funny too I don't feel a part of any of the groups I have dipped in and out of on BC either, I honestly think the bizarre language takes so much away from the interactions I've had, it feels so unreal compared to say this blog and the followers and reading both your blogs, more of a connection. I'm probably just not v computer literate.

    Definitely about speaking the same language online, I suppose I resented having to learn it and I know from the emails I get and my blog stats that I have a lot more non fertility literate readers than those that are fluent like yourselves. No need to apologise, I know I've slipped AF (my most hated anacronym) into my comments and a few confused readers have brought this to my attention...the solution = this post, a glossary of sorts, with a note directing people to this post in the 'About me' section.