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What you will learn in this lesson:

  • to conjugate regular -ar verbs in the present tense

  • the numbers 500–1000

  • to conjugate the verb estar (“to be,” used when referring to health and location)

  • to use and conjugate the verb tener (“to have,” used to indicate possession)

  • to ask the patient about specific chief complaints, present problems/symptoms (utilizing the verbs estar and tener)

  • to attempt to characterize symptoms with your patient

  • to create a dialogue of a patient interview

  • to politely excuse yourself from the room momentarily

The goal of this lesson is to be able to learn to conjugate verbs and to use them in sentences and in questions to ask what brings the patient here today (chief complaint); to ask how the patient is progressing if it is a follow-up visit; to qualify, quantify, and attempt to characterize the symptoms the patient has; to ask what medications or remedies the patient is presently taking or using; to ask what needs to be done next; and to excuse yourself from the room in a culturally courteous manner.


Now, we’ve finally arrived at what you’ve been so enthusiastically awaiting: conjugating! It’s really quite simple. Just think, for example, of “conjugated estrogen.” You merely take a basic molecular structure and change that base by adding on different molecules, or in this case, adding on different endings to the base root of the verb. (How thrilling!)

First, let’s begin by refreshing our memories. Do you remember what an infinitive is? If not, we’ll gladly remind you that an infinitive in English consists of the word “to” and a verb: to take, to eat, to examine, to walk, to run, and so on. However, in Spanish, an infinitive is comprised of only one action word, which ends in either -ar, -er, or -ir. In Spanish, there is no equivalent of the separate word “to.”

tomar (to drink, to take)

hablar (to speak)

pesar (to weigh)

These Spanish infinitives end in -ar and must be conjugated.

To conjugate an -ar verb: drop the -ar ending.

tomar – the ending = tom

Take the stem tom and add:

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you (familiar)


(él, ella, usted)1


he, she


you (formal)






(ellos, ellas, ustedes)2


they (m., f.)


you (pl.)


1usted is often abbreviated as Ud.

2ustedes is often abbreviated as Uds.

From the standpoint of a healthcare professional, you would use

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to address a child or teenager


to ...

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