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Terms are character strings that consist of words, phrases and other human-readable representations that convey the meanings of concepts. A term in connection to a particular concept is called a Description.

Descriptions may be of several different types. Refer to the SNOMED CT Technical Implementation Guide for specific background on the different types of Descriptions that are recognized in the International Release. This document refers to two commonly used Description types:

  1. Fully Specified Name (FSN) and 
  2. Synonym;
Preferred Term is not a Description type but is the name given to a Synonym which is marked as preferred in a particular language or dialect.