To the Editor:
As an author, it is essential to craft text that is TTP (To The Point). To that end, I have uncritically employed acronyms and initialisms.
As an editor, it is essential to assure that readers comprehend text. To that end, I implore avoidance of acronyms and initialisms especially when they are unknown to or may mislead readers.
Anesthesiology offers guidance for the use of acronyms and initialisms. “Do not use any nonstandard abbreviations…Refer to the List of Standard Abbreviations.”1
How can authors and editors BOLO (Be On the Lookout) for acronyms and initialisms?
Understanding the origins and implementation of AIDA (Acronyms, Initialisms and Abbreviations Dictionary) will assist authors and editors in effective and appropriate UTIL (utilization) of these shortcuts. The Hektoen Institute of Medicine (https://www.hektoen.org/) publishes Hektoen International, A Journal of Medical Humanities (https://hekint.org/at-a-glance/). Its purpose is to bring, “…culture into medicine…exposing healthcare professionals to art, ethics, literature, history, anthropology, literature, philosophy, religion, and sociology.”2 An informative issue offers a concise SMRY (Summary) of concerns when considering the use of acronyms and initialisms.3 To paraphrase the New England Journal of Medicine,4 “Authors should realize that their mission is to reach a large readership by a clear and simple presentation of their investigative result or educational message, and anything that hinders communication (e.g., ambiguous symbols and abbreviations that defy comprehension of ideas) defeats the purpose for which a medical article has been written.”
Support was provided solely from institutional and/or departmental sources.
The author declares no competing interests.