Doctor’s Office

Chez le médecin
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Le cabinet médical

Whether you have a chronic illness or come down with a common cold, you might have to visit le médecin during your travels. Here’s some essential vocabulary for talking to doctors and getting the help you need.

At the doctor’s office   Chez le médecin *
appointment   un rendez-vous
doctor   un médecin
doctor’s office   le cabinet médical
~ insurance card   la carte vitale
nurse   un infirmier
une infirmière
patient   un patient
une patiente
specialist   un/e spécialiste
waiting room   la salle d’attente

 * In French, it’s typical to use chez + job title to refer to some places of business – learn more.

 In both French and English, the most common verbs for talking about ailments are the most common verbs in the language, but être and avoir are not always equivalent to "to be" and "to have," respectively, when it comes to illness. This list is arranged alphabetically by ailment, but be sure to pay attention to the verb you need to use with each one.

Ailments   Maladies
to have after-effects   avoir des sequelles
to be allergic to … *   être allergique à … *
to have arthritis   avoir de l’arthrite
to have asthma   être asthmatique
to be cold   avoir froid
to have a cold   avoir
un rhume
to be constipated   être constipé(e)
to have diabetes   être diabétique
to have diarrhea   avoir la diarrhée
to be dizzy   avoir le vertige
to have an earache   avoir mal à l’oreille **
to have a fever   avoir de la fièvre
to have the flu   avoir la grippe
to have frostbite   avoir des engelures
to have a hangover   avoir la gueule de bois
to have hay fever   avoir un rhume des foins
to have a headache   avoir mal à la tête **
mal de tête
to have a heart attack   avoir une crise cardiaque
un infarctus
to have heartburn   avoir des brûlures d’estomac
to have hemorrhoids (piles)   avoir des hémorroïdes
to have high blood pressure   faire de l’hypertension
to be hot   avoir chaud
to be infected   être infecté(e)
to have an infection   avoir une infection
to have insomnia   être insomniaque
to be itchy   avoir des démangeaisons
to be jet lagged   être fatigué dû au décalage horaire
to have low blood pressure   faire de l’hypotension
to have motion sickness   avoir le mal des transports
to be pregnant   être enceinte
to have a runny nose   avoir le nez qui coule
to be seasick   avoir le mal de mer
to be sick   être malade
to have sinusitis   avoir de la sinusite
to have a stomachache   avoir mal à l’estomac **
to have a stroke   avoir
une attaque
un AVC
to be sunburnt   être brûlé par le soleil
to be tired   être fatigué
to have a toothache   avoir mal aux dents **
to need …   avoir besoin
  an inhaler     d’un inhalateur
  a prescription     d’une ordonnance
  stitches     de points de suture
  surgery     de chirurgie
  treatment     de traitement
  an ultrasound     d’une échographie
  an x-ray     d’une radio
Verbs   Verbes (click for conjugations)
to ache all over   avoir mal partout
to bandage   panser
to bleed   saigner
to break (one’s arm, leg)   se casser (le bras, la jambe)
to catch a cold   s’enrhumer
to cough   tousser
to faint   s’évanouir
to feel sick   se sentir malade
to recover   guérir
to sneeze
  (response: bless you)
   (à tes souhaits / à vos souhaits)
to throw up   vomir

* Allergic to something? See vocab for medicines and food.

** For other aches and pains, see French body parts.

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Chez le médecin

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