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May 1999

Does Somebody Else Out There Hate Acronyms?

Author Affiliations

Copyright 1999 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.1999

Arch Ophthalmol. 1999;117(5):701-702. doi:

Pick up any journal and thumb through its pages. Before long, you start seeing acronyms. Some will be readily understood, such as LASER or RNA, words that have become generally accepted language. Others, such as ARMD, RPE, ROP, or CRVO, will be familiar to a specialized audience only. A few seem to be created de novo for a single publication. To the average member of a diverse readership, many acronyms are an unnecessary source of frustration. The need for fewer keystrokes seems to be leading us into a language of alphabet soup.