Intended for healthcare professionals


Tolerating tolerability

BMJ 2000; 321 doi: (Published 08 July 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;321:77
  1. Karin R M Band, freelance medical translators,
  2. David Winstanley, freelance medical translators
  1. Brentwood, Essex

    Until recently, the English language lacked a single, punchy, positively flavoured noun to describe a medicine's (greater or lesser) freedom from side effects. Whereas German has its Verträglichkeit (from sich vertragen—to agree with something or someone), a word that emphasises the positive aspect of something being well tolerated, all that could be found in English was more or less verbose phraseology, such as a good side effect …

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