Pharmacy Abbreviations


Standard abbreviations used on discharge letters and prescriptions. Numbers of tablets/capsules are usually represented
by numbers however, on occasion are represented by roman numerals (i = 1, ii = 2, iii = 3, iv = 4, v = 5 etc.).
Labels on dispensed medicines will always have any abbreviations “translated” into Plain English

Abbreviation  Meaning 
OD Daily
BD Twice a day
TDS (or TD or TID) Three times a day
QDS (or QD) Four times a day
OM (or M) In the morning
ON (or N) At night
CC With food
PC After food
AC Before food
PRN When required
MDU (or MD or UT) As directed by the prescriber
4h (also qqh OR 4′) Every four hours (number indicated number of hours)
2p Two Puffs/metered doses of an inhaler
MN (sometimes appears as NM) Morning and night
PO Administer orally
PR Administer anally/rectally (unless this seems odd, as PRN
may mean when required, this should be obvious however
as the item will not be a suppository or enema)
PV Administer vaginally
BNO Both nostrils
BEY Both eyes
LE/RE Left eye/Right eye