Medical Definition of Ad lib

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Ad lib: Abbreviation for the Latin "ad libitum" meaning "at pleasure" and "at one's pleasure, as much as one desires, to the full extent of one's wishes." Sometimes seen on a prescription or doctor's order. For example, during an overnight fast when the patient is not to eat any food but can have water, the doctor's order might read: "Water ad lib" (water as desired).

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Reviewed on 12/27/2018

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