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This term (RCIU harmonieux) caught my attention in an SAE report, and I will admit that it almost tricked me.
Harmonieux generally has a positive connotiation, as, I’m sure, non-French speakers could guess. However, RCIU is the French abbreviation for intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR). So, you can see how IUGR would PROBABLY not be described in a positive context.
Thus, I searched the phrase, hoping to resolve this conundrum. An online medical school answered my question. Apparently there can be RCIU dysharmonieux (ou asymétrique) and RCIU harmonieux (ou symétrique). Per the website, “Le RCIU harmonieux (ou symétrique, ou homogène) concerne tous les paramètres biométriques (périmètre crânien, taille, poids). Il témoigne d’un processus pathologique survenant précocement au cours de la grossesse. Il est de moins bon pronostic (origine constitutionnelle et anomalies génétiques fréquentes).”
Being a common term in French, I translated it as symmetrical IUGR and searched THAT term. Numerous hits came up from reputable websites! Sure enough, I’d found the correct translation.
This was a lesson in translation that emphasized the distinct differences between literary and medical language. As a translator, I have to pause when I am thinking about applying literary language to a medical text. It is important that I research any terms that are unfamiliar to me, in order to make sure the client has an accurate translation of their document.