Green’s Dictionary of Slang

med n.


1. a medical student; also attrib.; thus (1940s+) med college, medical school; med business, medical business.

[Ire]Wexford Indep. 17 Sept. 3/2: There is no better mode of arriving at a hasty ‘kick out‘ from any respctable socity than that of stating you are a Medical Student. The host inquires ‘who is the chap with the imperial’. One of the invited whispers in confidence, ‘he’s a med’.
[US]B.H. Hall College Words (rev. edn) 312: med, medic. A name sometimes given to a student in medicine.
[UK](con. 1840s–50s) H. Mayhew London Labour and London Poor IV 248/2: Medical students are sometimes sweet on Liza, but [...] ‘Meds’ aint good for much; they’re larky young blokes, but they’ve never much money.
A.H. Quinn Pennsylvania Stories 19: The Meds waited till the visitors were opposite them [DA].
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 6 Sept. 13/1: A big surgeon [...] came to a lady-student’s ‘case,’ neatly bandaged. Removing the outer wrapping he discovered a rather dirty bandage, and demanded of the terrified lady ‘med.’ an explanation.
[US]I. Shulman Good Deeds Must Be Punished 87: A sophomore pre-med.
[US](con. 1940s) H. Simmons Man Walking On Eggshells 158: Tack was taking a pre-med course.
[US]K. Kolb Getting Straight 11: One of the med students was over him, listening with a stethoscope.
[US]B. Hannah Geronimo Rex 253: I’ve been in med school.
[Aus]Benjamin & Pearl Limericks Down Under 15: A fresher who came up from Hall, / [...] / Up the garden was led / By a bibulous med.
Courier jrnl (Louisville, KY) 23 Dec. 9/6: Keyboard and guitar man Fred Caudill, one of the med students.
[UK]G. Iles Turning Angel 88: This is Susan Salter, my med tech.

2. a doctor.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 12 Oct. 3/2: And when years crowd round your carcase, and your soul gets old and brown, / Flout the med. whose vain remark is that your system’s ‘broken-down.’.
[Ire]J. Phelan Letters from the Big House 39: Member saying to the med as how if I was balmy then I couldn’t have bread-and-water nor the pussy.
[US]M. Spillane Return of the Hood 10: I had [...] the critical, anti-social personality that, according to the psycho meds, made such a deed possible.

3. medicine; medication; usu. in pl.

implied in med-man
[US]S. Morgan Homeboy 263: They upped his meds today.
[US]J. Stahl Permanent Midnight 205: By the time he left some of the meds kicked in.
[UK]Observer Screen 16 Jan. 19: The first programme begins in the psychosis unit and considers the tricky business of ‘meds’ or medication.
[US]P. Roth Human Stain 224: Religiously taking his meds — for the anxiety his Klonopin, for the depression his Zoloft, for the sizzling ankles and the gnawing knees and the relentlessly aching hips his Salsalate.
[UK]N. ‘Razor’ Smith A Few Kind Words and a Loaded Gun 165: No more hiding the meds, OK?
[US]A. Steinberg Running the Books 373: I need my meds, where are my meds.
[US]W. Henderson City of Nightmares Part Two 3: The morning med was to mellow him out. The afternoon med was to keep him very calm. The night med was [...] to put him to sleep.
[Aus] A. Savage ‘Killing Peacocks’ in Crime Factory: Hard Labour [ebook] He’s tried taking the meds but they make him...he calls it ‘neutral’.
[US]J. Stahl Happy Mutant Baby Pills 27: Haldol, for you non-antipsychotic meds takers, is the the granddaddy of ‘chemical chains’ [etc.].
[Ire]L. McInerney Glorious Heresies 305: ‘What kind of statement? “I’m off my fucking meds?”’.
1011 ‘Next Up?’ 🎵 Bruck down a 9 in flake, and whip it in Zs / Let it dry then put it in pebs, cats them call for the meds [i.e. crack cocaine].
[US]D. Winslow ‘The San Diego Zoo’ in Broken 168: They [i.e. psychotics] have a certain look in their eyes when they’ve gone off the meds.
[Aus]G. Disher Consolation 353: [M]ysterious headlights in the night, or a grown son not taking his meds.
[Ire]P Howard Braywatch 181: They’re all looking at me like I’m basically off my meds.

4. medical school; also attrib.

[US]K. Vonnegut ‘The Package’ in Bagombo Snuff Box (1999) 47: He went to med school.
[Can]M. Richler Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz (1964) 169: Only three Jewish kids got into med in his year.
[US]A. Baraka Tales (1969) 8: He’s in med school and married and lost to you, hombre.
[US]S. King Stand (1990) 669: If we had somebody from med school.
[US]T. Jones Pugilist at Rest 105: The English faculty had its med school counterparts.
[US]S. King Dreamcatcher 264: Henry recalled an offprint from med school.

In compounds

med-man (n.) [abbr. ]

1. (US) a quack or a patent medicine seller.

[US]Irwin Amer. Tramp and Und. Sl. 128: Med Man. – In pitchman’s argot and at a fair or carnival a ‘medicine man’ or fake doctor; one who peddles proprietory remedies.

2. a doctor [SE medicine man].

[US]Billboard 26 June 61: In England ...a med man is a crocus [HDAS].

In phrases