Research Article

An Interdisciplinary Approach to Medical Discourse: Analyzing Patients’ Speech


  • Efthymia M. Tsaroucha Adjunct Lecturer of Linguistics & Post-doctoral Researcher, Foreign Languages Centre, University of Thessaly, 38221 Volos, Greece
  • Dimitrios T. Karalis Adjunct Lecturer, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, University of Thessaly, Registered Endocrinologist, Member of the Hellenic Endocrine Society, Greece
  • Angeliki Kleisiari-Karali BA in Greek Philology, Hellenic Open University of Cyprus, MSc in Bioethics, School of Medicine, Democritus University of Thrace, Greece


This paper argues for an interdisciplinary approach to medical discourse and aims to analyze patients’ speech. The paper investigates the case of subclinical hypothyroidism and attempts to build bridges between the disciplines of medicine and linguistics. It is suggested that the way patients think of this disease and utilize language in order to express its symptoms is affected by the abnormal TSH level and the normal levels in T3 and T4 thyroid hormones. The article further attempts to propose that human thought and language use are shaped by environmental factors such as chronic diseases. The paper discusses how patients of subclinical hypothyroidism, whose mother tongue is Modern Greek, use language figuratively by means of metaphor and metonymy.

Article information


International Journal of Linguistics, Literature and Translation

Volume (Issue)

3 (1)





How to Cite

Tsaroucha, E. M. ., Karalis, D. T. ., & Kleisiari-Karali, A. . (2020). An Interdisciplinary Approach to Medical Discourse: Analyzing Patients’ Speech. International Journal of Linguistics, Literature and Translation, 3(1), 142–145. Retrieved from



medical discourse; interdisciplinary approach; medicine; linguistics; patient’s speech; subclinical hypothyroidism; disease; language use; figurative language; metaphor; metonymy