cartilage

noun
car·​ti·​lage | \ˈkär-tə-lij, ˈkärt-lij\

Definition of cartilage 

1 : a usually translucent (see translucent sense 1) somewhat elastic tissue that composes most of the skeleton of vertebrate embryos and except for a small number of structures (such as some joints, respiratory passages, and the external ear) is replaced by bone during ossification in the higher vertebrates

2 : a part or structure composed of cartilage

Examples of cartilage in a Sentence

She fell and damaged some cartilage in her knee.

Recent Examples on the Web

Osteoarthritis is a condition in which the cartilage on the ends of your bones gradually wears down over time, which causes pain, joint stiffness, and narrowing of the spine that sometimes results in spinal stenosis. Korin Miller, SELF, "New York Mets Player David Wright Announced He's Retiring Due to Spinal Stenosis," 4 Oct. 2018 After insertion, the Cartiva cartilage protrudes slightly from the metatarsal bone at the base of the big toe. Laura Johannes, WSJ, "Synthetic Materials Can Replace Cartilage in Your Aching Joints," 16 Sep. 2018 Like any other cartilage piercing, the tragus takes about three to six months to heal. Devon Abelman, Allure, "Everything You Want to Know About Tragus Piercings — Including How Much They Hurt," 13 Aug. 2018 With luck, the pincer will come free and bring with it the cartilage within the claw. House Beautiful, "Todd English's Surf & Turf Recipe at Kitchen of the Year," 20 July 2012 From that information a series of algorithms is then able to determine the position of things like bone, fat, cartilage and other tissues, which are then colorized. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Check Out These Awesome New 3D, Full-Color X-Rays," 13 July 2018 This painful condition commonly occurs with age or injuries that damage cartilage. Bradley J. Fikes, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Seeking financial security, Scripps Research is taking its science directly to patients," 24 June 2018 Doctors at William Beaumont Army Medical Center in El Paso, Texas performed a total left ear reconstruction which included taking cartilage from the patient's ribs. Brett Molina, USA TODAY, "This soldier's new ear was grown under her skin," 10 May 2018 There, the cartilage can grow into a functional ear, complete with nerve endings and blood vessels. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Doctors Grow Replacement Ear Inside Patient's Arm," 10 May 2018

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

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First Known Use of cartilage

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cartilage

Middle English, from Latin cartilagin-, cartilago

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Statistics for cartilage

Last Updated

2 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for cartilage

The first known use of cartilage was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for cartilage

cartilage

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cartilage

: a strong but flexible material found in some parts of the body (such as the nose, the outer ear, and some joints)

cartilage

noun
car·​ti·​lage | \ˈkär-tə-lij \

Kids Definition of cartilage

: tough flexible tissue that makes up most of the skeleton of vertebrates during early development and except for in a few places in the body (as the nose or outer ear) is replaced by bone

cartilage

noun
car·​ti·​lage | \ˈkärt-ᵊl-ij, ˈkärt-lij \

Medical Definition of cartilage 

1 : a usually translucent somewhat elastic tissue that composes most of the skeleton of vertebrate embryos and except for a small number of structures (as some joints, respiratory passages, and the external ear) is replaced by bone during ossification in the higher vertebrates

2 : a part or structure composed of cartilage

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More from Merriam-Webster on cartilage

Spanish Central: Translation of cartilage

Nglish: Translation of cartilage for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cartilage for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about cartilage

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