Grammar can be a little bit tricky sometimes. There are a lot of times where words may sound the same or similar in spelling yet the meaning can be very different.
Normally, these words cause a lot of confusion especially when trying to figure out which word you should use. Some of these words include followup and follow-up in which many individuals cannot tell the difference thus they end up misusing them. It’s been also a well-known concern among some transcriptionists.
The unhyphenated word is less common in use. You will rarely find people using the term mainly because of being uncertain on its meaning. So let us look at both terms, identify the difference and usage of each.
Followup vs Follow-up
First of all, both words are correct unlike what most people think. Followup is used as either a noun or an adjective in a sentence while follow-up is used as a verb. It is not uncommon to use one word to mean the other but this makes your sentence completely wrong.
However, you will realize that in the medical context, these two words may have the same meaning. The difference will be in how the sentence is formatted. Take a look at the given example below.
1. The interviewee did not return for a followup.
2. The patient’s followup will be next week.
1. The doctor will follow-up the patient in a few weeks.
2. The patient needs to follow-up tomorrow.
In the first case, followup is used to mean something that will be looked into later while in the second case, follow- up is used to mean the actual action of looking into whatever it is which in this case is a doctor seeing a patient for more consultations. Followup may also be used to mean a story that will continue to be published even after an earlier publication in the case of journalism.
1. We will continue to followup on the story
2. The newspaper published a follow-up of the story yesterday.
Learning how to use which word on which case goes a long way in ensuring that you communicate effectively to avoid common grammatical errors. So the first step of making sure that you are on the correct path is to first identify whether it is being used as a verb, noun or an adjective to compliment the noun.
This means that you may need to use both words in the same sentence which could prove more tricky since it would need you to know both meanings in order to avoid a kind of miscommunication that may occur due to misuse of each word.
The trick to gaining any useful knowledge about any language is by practicing it as much as you possibly can. By doing adequate practices on the area of concern, you will be able to grasp meanings and how to use each and every word in that language. Identify a couple of sentences that will help you understand the meaning and use them when constructing new ones with the same meaning.