God bless medical euphemisms! When admitted with food poisoning, telling the nurse you have a ‘code brown’ spares all our blushes.
But sometimes they are misleading. I read this week about ‘pregnancy reduction’. With the rise of IVF it is becoming popular with mums of twins who want just one baby of a given gender.
The phrase calls to mind ‘breast reduction’, as if aborting a foetus is equivalent to reducing bulk in the womb.
Ours is a culture of ‘death by a thousand cuts’, where we are shielded from harsh realities through tactful wording.
This may be appropriate when patients are at death’s door.
But if they are simply making a lifestyle choice, isn’t it better that they do it with eyes open?