resources medical translator

18 May Resources that are a must for any medical translator

Translating is a multi-task job. Any translator must read up on much information, so resources are key for carrying on a good medical translation. In Okomeds, we previously wrote about this issue; but now we are widening the number of resources that any medical translator should use.



Blogs provide the opportunity to get very different ideas about several fields. It is highly recommended to read this kind of posts for being influenced about latest news, tips… but even curiosities that can be applied to your medical translations.

  • Onehourtranslation: It is a blog specialised in medical translation which offers several tips to translators.
List of essential resources for a medical translator
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Databases offer a huge lexical. It can be really useful when a medical translator is not able to find the right translated word; but it also provides the translator the opportunity to better understand an idea (such as surgery or a side effect).

  • Pubmed: It is a database including more than 27 millions citations related to biomedicine, medical science and healthcare.


Reference book

The vademecum is an essential for any medical translator. This is a handbook which explains the name of drugs and medicines. So, when translating medicines or information for a pharmaceutical, translators must previously check their texts with a reference book. That is the better way to get the right term.

  • Vademecum: This site includes a list with all the drugs legally sold in Spain – with a brief explanation.



Can’t you find the right term? Dictionaries are key for finding an accurate word in the target language. There are different types of dictionaries: monolingual (just an explanation of the term in one language for a better understanding); bilingual (a translation of each term in 2 languages for easing the job); visual (primarily using pictures to illustrate the meaning of words, for better seeing small differences)…

  • Merriam Webster: This great dictionary offers an online area which focus on medicine.


Mailing lists

Mailing lists allow the exchange of information among users; some of them are focused on medicine. This kind of lists are used for asking doubts related to translation, sharing useful resources, giving advice…

  • RedIRIS: Different mailing lists about several topics can be found in RedIRIS – a Spanish academic and research network working in different fields as medicine or science.


These are some of the essential resources for any medical translator, but not the only ones. Are you willing to add any other?

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