Using Right Vocabulary In OET Speaking and Writing Sub Test

As a medical expert, you come across different types of people.

You talk to patients, relatives of patients and the healthcare experts in your professional circle.

Of course, when you talk to someone who knows medical English, someone from your professional circle, you will make use of medical terms or terminology.

But, when you are talking to the patient or the relatives of the patient who may or may not know medical terminology or medical jargon, you will be making use of common language that can be understandable.


A patient may explain one of the problems in simple language as follows:
I often can’t get to the toilet in time.

But, when you have to report this to one of your seniors, you will have to make use of formal tone. You will have to showcase your medical terminology too.

For example:

Mrs. Martha (patient’s name) has got some problems with incontinence.
Similarly, when you are speaking to the mother of the boy / girl who needs to have a tonsillectomy, you can inform as follows:
He / she needs to get the tonsils removed. It will be a minor operation.
Some other examples include the following:

Body Mass Index (BMI): Body fat measurement (that is usually based on height and weight)
Malignant (more common word is cancerous)
Benign (more common word that can be used in place of benign is Not cancerous)
Hypotension (but, when you are talking to patients, you can say Low blood pressure)
Lesion (More common words that can be used include the following: Cut, sore, wound.
Anti-inflammatory: (something that can easily reduce swelling, soreness or pain - for instance, naproxen / ibuprofen)

Especially, in OET Speaking Test, you will have role-plays and you are expected to make use of the common English vocabulary and the medical terms (when the interviewer is playing the role of the patient of the relative of the patient).
But, when it comes to OET writing, you can make use of medical terms and phrases that are appropriate.