Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

To perform a medical test, treatment or operation

anaesthetise

a British spelling of anaesthetize

anaesthetize

verb

to give someone an anaesthetic so they do not feel pain during a medical operation

anesthetize

an American spelling of anaesthetize

attend

verb

to look after someone, especially someone who is ill or someone in an important position

bandage

verb

to wrap a bandage around an injured part of your body

bleed

verb

to take blood from someone’s body as part of a medical treatment, especially in the past

bring back

to save someone’s life when they have almost died

bypass

verb

to perform a medical operation to make someone’s blood flow past a blocked or damaged part of their heart rather than through it

catch

verb

to discover a problem or medical condition and stop it from becoming worse

catheterise

a British spelling of catheterize

catheterize

verb

to put a catheter into a part of someone’s body

cauterise

a British spelling of cauterize

cauterize

verb

to close a cut by using a hot instrument in order to prevent infection or to stop blood flowing out

cleanse

verb

to clean a cut in your skin

close

verb

if you close a wound (=injury or cut in your skin), or if it closes, the edges join and the skin becomes healthy again

detain

verb

to keep someone in hospital because they are too ill to leave

detox

verb

to have treatment in order to stop taking drugs or drinking alcohol, or to make someone do this

dissect

verb

to cut the body of a dead person or animal into parts in order to examine them

dress

verb

to clean an injury and cover it with a piece of soft cloth called a dressing

drip-feed

verb

to give food or medicine to someone who is ill through a special piece of equipment with a tube that goes into their body

excite

verb

to make a nerve or other part of the body start to become more active

follow up

to check the health of someone who has received medical treatment, in order to be certain that it was effective

graft

verb

to take a piece of skin or bone etc from one part of someone’s body and use it to replace or repair a damaged part of their body

heal

verb

to make a part of the body healthy again after an injury

heal

verb

to make someone healthy again after they have been ill, especially by using methods other than medicine

hospitalise

a British spelling of hospitalize

immunise

a British spelling of immunize

immunize

verb

to prevent someone from getting a particular illness by putting a substance into their body, especially using a needle

implant

verb

to put something into someone’s body in a medical operation

incise

verb

to cut into the body with a sharp knife

irradiate

verb

to use radiation on something as a medical treatment, for example in order to destroy cancer cells

irrigate

verb

to wash an injury using a continuous flow of liquid

lance

verb

to cut an infected part of someone’s skin in order to remove pus (=yellow liquid under the skin)

lobotomize

verb

to perform a lobotomy on someone

manipulate

verb

to use your hands to move or press part of someone’s body as part of a medical treatment

massage

verb

to press, squeeze, and rub someone’s body in order to reduce pain in their muscles or to make them relax

modulate

verb

to control or affect a medical process or condition

open up

to cut into someone’s body for medical reasons

operate

verb

to cut into part of someone’s body for medical reasons

palpate

verb

to examine a part of the body by pressing your fingers on it

patch up

to give basic medical treatment to someone who is injured

probe

verb

to examine part of someone’s body by pressing a probe into it

put out

to make someone unconscious by giving them a drug, usually before a medical operation

put under

to make someone unconscious before a medical operation by giving them a drug

rehabilitate

verb

to help someone who has been ill or in prison to return to a healthy, independent, and useful life

reset

verb

to put a broken bone back into the correct position

resuscitate

verb

to make an unconscious person start to breathe again

scan

verb

to use a piece of equipment to produce a picture of the inside of a part of your body

scan

verb

to use a piece of equipment to produce a picture of the inside of an object

screen

verb

to test someone to find out if they have a particular illness

scrub up

if a doctor or nurse scrubs up, they wash their hands and arms thoroughly before doing a medical operation

section

verb

to cut something during an operation

sedate

verb

to give someone a sedative

set

verb

to put the two ends of a broken bone back into the correct position so that they can grow into one piece again

stabilise

a British spelling of stabilize

stabilize

verb

to reach a point where a medical condition is not likely to suddenly become worse, or to make someone reach this point

sterilise

a British spelling of sterilize

sterilize

verb

to perform an operation on someone to make them unable to produce children

stitch

verb

to join someone’s skin together after it has been cut

stitch up

to join someone’s skin together after it has been cut

strap

verb

to wrap a piece of cloth tightly round something, especially round a part of your body that has been injured

swab

verb

to apply medicine or clean an injury with a swab

tape

verb

to wrap a part of your body tightly with a special band of cloth because it is injured or weak

test

verb

to produce a particular result after taking a medical test

tranquilize

the American spelling of tranquillize

tranquillise

a British spelling of tranquillize

tranquillize

verb

to make a person or animal calmer, especially by using a drug

X-ray

verb

to take a picture of the inside of something using X-rays

pump someone’s stomach

to empty someone’s stomach using a piece of medical equipment called a stomach pump

put/send someone to sleep

to give someone a drug that makes them unconscious for a medical operation

put/set someone right

to make someone feel better

Word of the Day

disciple

someone who admires a famous person such as a political or religious leader and is influenced by...

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog