birth canal


: the channel formed by the cervix, vagina, and vulva through which the fetus passes during birth

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web His big head had been stuck inside the birth canal. Matthew Schnipper, The New Yorker, 9 Feb. 2023 Caesarian sections make the healthy birth of babies too large to make it through the birth canal possible. Avery Hurt, Discover Magazine, 4 Feb. 2022 As expected, all seven normal babies saw their heads change shape as they were born to conform to their mother's birth canal. Nathaniel Scharping, Discover Magazine, 15 May 2019 Evolution’s solution, the argument goes, was to truncate gestation so that lesser developed newborns can squeeze through the birth canal. Jason P. Dinh, Discover Magazine, 19 July 2022 After a gestation that lasts only a month or so, red kangaroos emerge from the birth canal as little more than a jelly-bean-size nub, pink and hairless and blind. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 11 Jan. 2023 Exposure to normal bacteria in the birth canal may play a role in the development of a baby’s immune system. Neel Shah, Discover Magazine, 4 June 2015 Researchers know that infants acquire about 100 species of microbes in the birth canal, and others come from the mother’s skin after birth. Michael Tennesen, Discover Magazine, 13 July 2011 When their daughter Isabella was stuck in the birth canal with low amniotic fluid, Andrea was rushed to a Miami hospital for an emergency C-section. Globe Staff,, 9 Dec. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'birth canal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1884, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of birth canal was in 1884

Dictionary Entries Near birth canal

Cite this Entry

“Birth canal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition

birth canal

: the channel through which the fetus of a mammal passes during birth

Medical Definition

birth canal

: the channel formed by the cervix, vagina, and vulva through which the fetus passes during birth

More from Merriam-Webster on birth canal

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

A Good Old-Fashioned Quiz

Spell It

Hear a word and type it out. How many can you get right?

Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?