biopsy

noun

bi·​op·​sy ˈbī-ˌäp-sē How to pronounce biopsy (audio)
plural biopsies
: the removal and examination of tissue, cells, or fluids from the living body
biopsy transitive verb

Did you know?

Matter examined in a biopsy is always taken from a living organism. Most biopsies are done by using a needle to extract tissue or fluid, but some may instead require cutting, and others may amount to nothing more than swabbing the inside of the patient's cheek. Biopsies are best known as a means of detecting cancer, but a doctor may also take a biopsy of heart muscle to investigate suspected heart disease, for example, or perform a biopsy on a pregnant woman to test for disorders in the fetus.

Examples of biopsy in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The doctor can order a biopsy – which means cutting out a piece of the skin for further examination — and which, it should be noted, can result in scarring. Beth Sobol, Allure, 29 Nov. 2023 These biopsies, while essential for diagnosis, come with risks, including scarring. Christina Ruffini, CBS News, 30 Oct. 2023 The team is also working with international laboratories that are using artificial intelligence to evaluate biopsies of Faucette’s heart tissue, an assessment that Griffith says could detect early signs of tissue rejection. Tanya Lewis, Scientific American, 18 Oct. 2023 The $949 Galleri liquid biopsy can screen for more than 50 types of cancers. Alex Janin, WSJ, 25 Oct. 2023 These tests use unique deep-learning algorithms that assess digital images from patient biopsies and couple them with the patient’s clinical data. TIME, 18 Oct. 2023 The approach represents a new one in the field of liquid biopsy, in which DNA fragments in blood are used to detect or learn about tumors. Matthew Herper Reprints, STAT, 9 Oct. 2023 Doctors performed a biopsy, but Miller didn't wake up after the procedure. Mary Kekatos, ABC News, 16 Aug. 2023 Finally she was referred to a specialist who recommended a biopsy to examine samples of her kidney tissue for signs of damage or disease. Christine Yu, SELF, 4 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'biopsy.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

International Scientific Vocabulary bi- entry 2 + -opsy (as in autopsy)

First Known Use

1887, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of biopsy was in 1887

Dictionary Entries Near biopsy

Cite this Entry

“Biopsy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/biopsy. Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

biopsy

noun
bi·​op·​sy ˈbī-ˌäp-sē How to pronounce biopsy (audio)
plural biopsies
: the removal and examination of tissue, cells, or fluids from the living body

Medical Definition

biopsy

1 of 2 noun
bi·​op·​sy ˈbī-ˌäp-sē How to pronounce biopsy (audio)
plural biopsies
: the removal and examination of tissue, cells, or fluids from the living body

biopsy

2 of 2 transitive verb
biopsied; biopsying
: to perform a biopsy on
the intestinal polyps were removed and biopsied
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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