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prophylaxis

play
noun pro·phy·lax·is \-ˈlak-səs\

Definition of prophylaxis

plural

prophylaxes

play \-ˈlak-ˌsēz\
  1. :  measures designed to preserve health (as of an individual or of society) and prevent the spread of disease



Did You Know?

In Greek, phylax means "guard", so prophylactic measures guard against disease by taking action ahead of time. Thus, for example, before the polio vaccine became available, prophylaxis against polio included avoiding crowds and public swimming pools. These days a well-known kind of prophylactic is used to prevent sexually transmitted diseases; but prophylactic measures only work when people use them.

Origin and Etymology of prophylaxis

New Latin, from Greek prophylaktikos


First Known Use: circa 1842


Medical Dictionary

prophylaxis

play
noun pro·phy·lax·is \-ˈlak-səs\

Medical Definition of prophylaxis

plural

prophylaxes

\-ˈlak-ˌsēz\play
  1. :  measures designed to preserve health and prevent the spread of disease :  protective or preventive treatment <prophylaxis against viral diseases> <a paste containing fluorine for dental prophylaxis>




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