Medical Translation into Indic Languages

Medical translations require a great deal of skill and expertise at the best of times. Texts must be translated with extreme accuracy and according to a range of specific standards to ensure that no errors that could potentially have serious legal or even fatal consequences are made.

For most countries, translating a particular medical document typically means translating it into one specific national language. To translate, for instance, a user manual for medical equipment to be marketed across India, however, means getting the source language translated into a range of major Indian languages.

Every region of India has its own specific regional language, and with that, different ways of describing or referring to certain aspects of medical terms. This naturally requires specific knowledge of all the different variations and cultural differences within those regions and languages.

Translators will, among other things, have to have specific knowledge of certain terms used to describe particular conditions in different provinces.

A non-medical term or phrase used to describe the medical term ‘hypertension’ to make it more understandable for a patient, for example, may be totally different in Punjabi than it would be in Oriya, for instance.

Knowing these differences is vital to ensure that patients or their representatives are adequately informed and have no reason to sue a hospital or doctor for misinformation or in severe cases maybe even malpractice.

Most Indic language translation services will only translate documents into one or maybe two of these languages at a time, which means that the same document may have to be submitted to a whole list of agencies in order to get it localized for all areas within India.

We have assembled a team of highly trained experts that is able to translate a medical text of any kind from English into languages including Gujarati, Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, Oriya and Bengali, as well as Tamil, Nepali, Malayalam, Kannada, Marathi and Telegu

Our team members are all not only highly trained translators and specialized in medical translations; they are also well versed in the individual cultural aspects, attitudes, styles, etc applicable to each of these varying regions.

This means our clients can have a text, such as manual instructions for medical devices and equipment and/ or software, marketing brochures, training curriculums or packaging labels translated and localized for just about every province within India under one roof, at the same price for each translation.

The range of documents we specialize in also includes any other toxicological, clinical, pharmaceutical or biological documents, as well as medical questionnaires, patient information documents, glossaries of medical terminology or individual informed consent forms.

In other words, whether a Hindi medical translation is required to inform a patient of his condition or whether a complete Indic language translation for a new pharmaceutical product is required, our experts will be able to perform the task to the client’s greatest satisfaction and to the highest standards.

Whatever your requirement, contact us now for an example of our work and/ or a quote.

The Process of Medical Translation

Medical translations typically involve the translation of clinical, regulatory, technical and marketing documentation, software related documents or training courses for healthcare, medical device or pharmaceutical fields.


Countries around the globe require the translation of literature and labeling related to medical equipment or pharmaceuticals to be sold sold into their national languages.


In addition, documentation for clinical trials frequently has to be translated to allow local clinicians, patients and their representatives to read and subsequently understand them. The same applies to regulatory approval submissions.


Because medical texts are highly sensitive, technical and regulated, translators have to have specific training and extensive knowledge of medical and technical terms and procedures on top of their linguistic skills.


Because emphasis on high quality is very high due to the potential life and death implications of medical texts, translating agencies typically conform to at least one of a variety of standards, including the quality system standard (ISO 9001), the European standard of translation vendor quality (EN 15038) and/ or the standard of manufacture of medical equipment and devices (ISO 13485).


To ensure the translation of all medical texts are accurate and in perfect compliance with these high standards, translation takes place in a set of steps.


After the text to be translated from the source format, it is converted from the source language, let’s say English, into the target language, such as Urdu, for example.


This is done by highly trained translators using a variety of specialist tools and translation memory, a type of glossary used by translators to ensure the style of documents remains consistent.


The translated text is then read and edited by a second expert to ensure approved terminology, style and tone have been adhered to. Following this, the text is put into the required format, such as HTML, a word document, PDF, an e-learning program, etc.


This is followed by the document being proofread, ensuring that spelling, punctuation, page and line breaks are correct and no text has been corrupted. Finally, a so-called in-country review takes place.


This essentially means a native speaker of the language the text has been translated into reviews the document to ensure all specifications, product specifics or therapy specifics have been met correctly.


Our highly skilled experts adhere to these essential guidelines whenever they translate texts fro English into languages such as Bengali, Hindi, Gujarati, Urdu or Marathi; Telegu, Tamil, Malayalam, Oriya, Nepali, Kannada or Punjabi.



The documents we specialize in translating include everything from brochures and packaging labels through user manuals, software and training documentation, medical questionnaires and glossaries of medical terms to patient information and informed consent forms.


In fact, any type of biological, clinical,  toxicological or pharmaceutical documents will be dealt with according to the same strict guidelines by our highly trained professional translators to ensure first class, accurate translations are produced at all times.


Don’t leave accuracy to chance – get a professional translating agency for your Indic language translation of important medical documents. It could, after all, save lives.


Medical Translation and Healthcare Industries

Accurate, effective communication is of utmost importance within the health care industry. Errors in the translation of documents, such as user manuals, patient information or medical questionnaires can literally make the difference between life and death.

This is why medical and other translations and localizations within all areas of the healthcare industry have to be consistently accurate.

When it comes to dealing with medical equipment of any kind, physician related services and general well being of patients, translations into Indian languages, for example, have to be culturally appropriate, clear and both sensitively and carefully handled.

Mistranslations or misinterpretations of therms and phrases can lead to very serious consequences. A badly translated informed consent form, for instance, could lead to a patient not being as informed as they should be about a procedure to be undertaken, and subsequently going on to sue a medical practitioner or hospital for misinformation or even malpractice.

This, of course, is not acceptable under any circumstances. For this reason, doctors will often use common, rather than medical terms in such forms. It allows a patient to clearly understand what is happening. A translator has to make sure such nuances are kept within the translation.

Legal requirements also need to be translated exactly, as opposed to being loosely interpreted. A a matter of fact, specific laws and recommendations relating to healthcare, privacy and language requirements have to be taken into consideration when translating medical documents to ensure appropriate localization and assistance for those living in other countries without speaking the language very well.

We, ,  have the expertise to ensure that your documents will at all times be in compliance with these laws and recommendations. Our translators are trained and experienced in dealing with medical translations of all types.

Our company specializes in in particular in producing first class translations of patient information, informed consent forms, medical glossaries and medical questionnaires, as well as all kinds of biological, clinical, pharmaceutical and toxicological documents, software and equipment user manuals, brochures and packaging labels.

We are able to translate documents from English into 12 Indian languages, including Urdu, Telegu, Tamil, Punjabi, Oriya, and Nepali; Marathi, Malayalam, Kannada, Hindi, Gujarati and Bengali.

Whether you require a brochure or packaging label to be localized for marketing a product in a Gujarati speaking area or whether you need patient information to be translated into Tamil to help a patient understand what is happening, our experts will ensure it is done perfectly and in compliance with all relevant laws.

The importance of the correctness of medical translations with regards to every aspect of healthcare can not be stressed enough. It has to be right at all times to ensure no lives are being put at risk through what seemed to be just minor errors at the time.

Do not take the risk of getting it wrong by allowing a bilingual staff member to do the translation. Get a quote from us now and see for yourself how cost-effective getting it right can be.

Malayalam – the mountainous country

Malayalam – the mountainous country About 74 Dravidian languages are spoken by over 200 million people across the globe. Out of these, an estimated 169 million Indians speak 23 different Dravidian languages, mainly in southern India. However, the 4 major Dravidian tongues recognized as official state languages are —Tamil (Tamil Nadu), Telugu (Andhra Pradesh), Kannada (Karnataka) and of course Malayalam (Kerala and Lakhshadweep). Telugu is the largest spoken tongue; Tamil, extremely ancient has the richest literature and it is spoken over the widest area, including northwestern Sri Lanka; Kannada script has served as the source base for Telugu and finally Malayalam is the only language, whose almost 100% speakers are literate and speak English too.  All the four Dravidian languages have long literary histories and their own scripts to write in. As Latin in European history, Sanskrit was an aristocratic and scholastic language in many parts of India, the reason why it influenced evolution of other languages. Some basic vocabulary from Sanskrit has also found its way into Malayalam. These all having been greatly been influenced by Sanskrit and as a result have absorbed and adapted a large number of its words into their vocabularies. Thus, a large number of words in all four Dravidian languages have same root and therefore similar or similar sounding words. Other Dravidian languages, offshoots of these four languages, maybe resemble or mostly similar to these are spoken by few and practically no script to write with.  Mala-y-alam – (mala – (mountain) + alam – (place) meaning mountainous country) is one of the 23 official languages of India and the principal language of the South Indian state of Kerala and also of the Union Territory of Lakshadweep Islands on the west coast of India. Malayalam is the only name of a language that is spelt and read alike forwards and backwards – i.e., is a  Malayalam, besides being spoken predominantly in Kerala, “Malayalis” (people speaking Malyalam) living in Mahé (Mayyazhii), Union Territories of Andaman Islands, Nicobar Islands and Puducherry in southern India also speak it. In all, it is spoken by around 37 million native (who account for only 4 percent of the Indian population; they constitute 96 percent of the population of Kerala) and 10 million else where. Kerala boasts of bringing out nearly 170 daily newspapers, 235 weeklies and over 565 monthly periodicals – good enough to whet the appetite of almost totally literate Malayali population. Malayalam writing round writing or vattezhuthu system has evolved in the early 9th century from Tamil script, adopted from the brahmi script. Many are of the opinion that as the grammar and vocabulary of the two languages are common, and therefore Malayalam is more of an offspring of Tamil than an original language. However, it is not so, as Malayalam already has a rich modern literature dating thousands years and an independent written script (Kolezhethu) of its own.  The original Dravidian settlers commonly used Tamil as their Language. Tamil was the court Language too. Around the 10th century, Malayalam started to develop its own distinctive character. After Aryans started to settle, the Brahmin Namboodiris used Sanskrit only. Sanskrit influence put a brake on the growth of Malayalam. This instead enriched Malayalam rather than putting a question mark on its further evolution. The local language absorbed these words from Sanskrit and adopted them with a Malayali modification. Thus the Mani Pravlam or Malayalam evolved, heavily relying on Sanskrit words. Due to coexistence of different cultures, languages and people, one language has influenced the evolution and growth of the other. The Dravidian languages acquired, absorbed and adapted many words from the Indic languages, especially from Sanskrit, while, the Indic languages borrowed Dravidian sounds and grammatical structures, enriching each other. In Malayalam script, individual vowels and consonants can be easily differentiated. This script is syllabic – the syllables (taken as sequence of graphic elements) have to be read as one. After mid 20th century, like in Kannada language, Malayalam language also dropped many special, but not frequently used conjunct consonants and combinations of the vowel “u” with different consonants letters.  Malayalam currently has 53 letters, of which 20 are long and short vowels and the rest consonants. From late 20th century, the earlier style of writing has now been replaced with a new style. This new script reduces the different letters for typeset from 900 to less than 90, which makes it easier to develop Malayalam on the keyboards of typewriters and computers for use and promotion in local language. Malayalam, during its evolution, developed 3 distinct dialects and several smaller ones, indicating how dialects change under the local influence, culture and religious influence from one region to another. Influence of Sanskrit in Malayalam, like for most other Indian languages cannot be wished away. This is most prominently visible in the Brahimin dialects but to a lesser extent in the Harijan dialects. Malayalam has borrowed thousands of nouns and verbs and few indeclinable words.  Words adopted from other languages – English, Syriac, Greek, Hebrew, Latin, and Portuguese abound in the Christian dialects and those from Arabic and Urdu in the Muslim dialects make up a large chunk of Malayalam vocabulary. English is only second to Sanskrit in its influence on Malayalam. Hundreds of individual lexical items and many idiomatic expressions in modern Malayalam are taken from English too.  Together with Tamil, Kannada and two smaller dialects Kota and Kodagu, Malayalam belongs to the southern group of Dravidian languages. It resembles Tamil more than with others. Proto-Tamil Malayalam, the common source for both Tamil and Malayalam most likely separated into two branches from the ninth century onwards and this went on for over a period of four of five centuries. This gave rise to a new language – Malayalam, a language, distinct from Tamil and having its on script and spoken language. Tamil, as the language used by scholars and administrators, greatly influenced the development of Malayalam in its early period. Brahmins influence on the cultural life of Malyalis in later period helped to acquire and assimilate Indo-Aryan features into Malayalam language. Both the language and its writing system are closely related to Tamil; however Malayalam has a script of its own, distinct from Tamil or any other Dravidian language. Tamil is its neighbor on the south and east and Kannada on the north and east.  The earliest written record of Malayalam is the vazhappalli inscription of 830 AD. The works of early Malayali writers were of three types:

  1. Classical songs of the Tamil tradition, known as pattu
  2. maniprvalam, which permitted free intermingling of Sanskrit and Malayalam vocabularies
  3. The rich native folk songs

 Malayalam poetry of the late twentieth century reflects a combination of all these three different trends. The oldest (twelfth century) example of ramacharitam is the oldest work in pattu, while vaishikatantram is of maniprvalam trend. Another earliest (12th century) existing prose work in Malayalam is Bhashakautaliyam, a commentary on Chanakya’s Arthasastra.  Malayalis have always welcomed other languages to coexist with their own and the interaction of these with Malayalam has helped its development and evolution. Malayalam prose of different periods exhibit degree of influence of different languages such as Tamil, Sanskrit, Prakrits, Pali, Hindi, Urdu, Arabi, Persian, Syriac, Portuguese, Dutch, French and English. Modern literature is rich in poetry, fiction, drama, biography, and literary criticism. It is no doubt that with such an open mind, not only the language has flourished, but also Malayalis have become fully literate.