Deciphering Adoption Acronyms

Adoption posts can be overloaded with acronyms.  I found this helpful post on adoption.com and thought it was so helpful it should be passed on.  If you need help deciphering all those acronyms keep reading...


May 31st, 2007
Posted By: Kelly
mixed up letters
When you’re reading a child’s profile, their case history or a discussion on a forum, it can seem like Greek, oralphabet soup. Some of the acronyms are very easy and don’t require much explanation. Others you will want to thoroughly research.
Here’s an example:
My FD was just diagnosed with RAD and PTSD. We want to take her to an AT, but can’t find one near us. The TPR has not been done yet, so we’re not sure if we can do it.
AA = African American or Adoption Assistance
ADHD = Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder. ADD is the same thing minus the hyperactivity.
ASD = Autism Spectrum disorder
AT = Attachment therapy or attachment therapist
BM = Some people use this as an abbreviation for birth mother although it is being used less and less because of the derogatory connotation it can receive with bowel movement sharing the same abbreviation
BP = Bi-Polar disorder
BPD = Borderline Personality disorder
CD = Conduct disorder
CP = Cerebral Palsy
CW or SW = Case worker or Social worker
DD = Developmentally delayed
DD, DS, or DH = Dear daughter, Dear son or Dear husband, although the “D” can sometimes mean other things
FAS = Fetal alcohol syndrome, may be listed as FAE for fetal alcohol effects
FD and FS = Foster daughter or Foster son
GAD = Generalized Anxiety disorder
ICPC = Interstate Compact on the Placing of Children
IEP = Individualized Education Plan
LD = Learning disabilities
MR = mentally retarded or mildly retarded
NOS = No Other Symptoms, this is usually used in conjunction with another disorder, such as PDD NOS
OCD = Obsessive Compulsive disorder
ODD = Oppositional defiant disorder
PDD = Pervasive Developmental disorder
PTSD = Post traumatic stress disorder
R/O = Rule out – this can be a tricky one. While it says rule out, it is considered a diagnosis. This means that the child presents with the symptoms of the disorder, but they’re not 100% sure that’s what it is.
RAD = Reactive attachment disorder, may be listed as just AD
RTC = Residential Treatment Center
SBS = Shaken Baby syndrome
SID = Sensory integration disorder
SSI = Social Security Income
TPR = Termination of parental rights
WIC = Women, Infants, and Children Program
Are there other acronyms that I’ve missed that you’re wondering about? I will try to explain some of the more complicated ones in future blogs.
To learn more about some of the acronyms or disorders, go theAdoption.com glossary.


Morning Buzz said...

when you are refering to acronyms related to fetal alcohol you might also see the following:
FASD - Fetal Alcohol spectrum disorders
pFAS - partial fetal alcohol syndrome
ARND - alcohol related Neurodevelopmental disorders
ARBD - alcohol related birth defects
some specialist consider FAE an obsolete term. don't know if that will be helpful to your readers.

Adoptive Momma said...

Very helpful, thanks!

Adoption Services said...

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