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Medical French

You never know when you’ll need to know some medical French. This online audio lesson will help you learn medical French phrases just in case you ever need to visit French doctors or a French hospital. You may need to access health care in France if you’re feeling unwell or get injured. This French audio lesson will show you how to communicate your symptoms in French, and how to contact an ambulance or the fire department if necessary. So let's get prepared...

Talking about Medical French

J'ai mal.

I'm in pain.

J'ai mal à la tête

I have a headache.

J'ai mal au ventre

I have a stomach ache

J'ai mal à la gorge

I have a sore throat.

J'ai les oreilles douloureuses

I have sore ears.

J'ai mal à la dent.

I have a tooth ache.

Je suis malade.

I'm sick.

Je sens que je suis malade.

I'm feeling sick.

The following phrases are useful when describing where it hurts… (check out this lesson for body parts in French)

J'ai mal au bras.

My arm hurts.

Ma jambe me fait mal

My leg hurts.

Ma tête me fait mal.

My head hurts.

Mon genou me fait mal.

My knee hurts.

Mes fesses me font mal.

My bum hurts.

Ma gencive me fait mal

My gum hurts.

Mon pied me fait mal.

My foot hurts.

Mon doigt me fait mal.

My finger hurts.

Mon doigt de pied me fait mal.

My toe hurts.

J'ai mal à l'œil.

My eye hurts.

J'ai mal à l'épaule

My shoulder hurts.

J'ai mal au dos.

My back hurts.

When you go to the doctor he or she will ask you about your symptoms…

Quel type de symptôme avez-vous ?

What kind of symptoms do you have?

Est-ce que vous avez mal ?

Do you have pain?

Où est-ce que vous avez mal ?

Where do you have pain?

Est-ce que vous avez de la fièvre ?

Do you have a fever?

Maybe you have an idea what’s wrong with you. You could say …

J'ai attrapé froid.

I have a cold.

J'ai la grippe.

I have the flu.

J'ai une infection.

I have an infection.

J'ai un virus.

I have a virus.

J'ai de l'allergie

I have an allergy.

J'ai de l'allergie au pollen.

I have hay fever.

J'ai des douleurs de règles.

I have period pain.

Maybe you cut yourself and all you need is a bandage, you might need some sleeping pills for a long haul flight or cough syrup. Here is what you have to say…

J'ai besoin d'un bandage.

I need a bandage.

J'ai besoin d'un plâtre.

I need a plaster / bandaid.

J'ai besoin d'anti-inflammatoires.

I need some pain killers.

J'ai besoin de somnifères.

I need some sleeping pills.

J'ai besoin d'un sirop pour la toux.

I need some cough syrup

J'ai besoin de pastilles pour la gorge.

I need some throat lozenges.

J'ai besoin d'une prescription.

I need a prescription.

J'ai besoin d'une tablette de pilules contraceptives.

I need some contraception.

Here are some more general phrases and words…

La pharmacie

The pharmacy

Un médicament

The medicine

Le docteur or le médecin

The doctor

Une ambulance

The ambulance

Appelez une ambulance !

Call an ambulance!


The hospital

If you need to call an ambulance you need to know the number. In France it’s 15. You also might need to know the number for the fireman, you will have to dial 18.

That’s it for today’s French lesson. I hope you stay happy and healthy.

À bientôt! Marie-Claire Rivière and the Rocket French Team