cra·​ni·​ot·​o·​my | \ˌkrā-nē-ˈä-tə-mē \
plural craniotomies

Definition of craniotomy 

: surgical opening of the skull

Examples of craniotomy in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Today, doctors are using advanced techniques to perform neurosurgeries, including the awake craniotomy, laser ablation and biomarkers to light up the tumor. Nancy Dahlberg, miamiherald, "Brain cancer treatments showing promise with targeted therapies. 'Very exciting stuff.' | Miami Herald," 25 May 2018 The man was treated at Anand Rishi Hospital and craniotomy surgery, where a bone flap is removed so the brain can be accessed, was performed to remove the key. Fox News, "Man cheats death after being stabbed in skull with key," 23 Apr. 2018 The next month, on July 14, 2017, McCain underwent an emergency craniotomy for a blood clot above his left eye. Dan Nowicki, azcentral, "John McCain wins 6th Arizona Senate term, reclaims 'maverick' label," 2 Apr. 2018 Over the past 29 years, Vivian has undergone a mastectomy, chemotherapy, radiation, Tamoxifen, a stem cell transplant, a craniotomy and other cancer treatments. Michelle Matthews,, "Auburn celebrates sick staffer with surprise birthday parade," 22 Mar. 2018 McCain on July 14 underwent an emergency craniotomy to address a blood clot that was later revealed to be associated with glioblastoma, a deadly kind of brain cancer. Dan Nowicki, USA TODAY, "Sen. John McCain: Doctors gave me 'poor prognosis' on cancer fight," 24 Sep. 2017 Republicans, though inconvenienced by John McCain’s keyhole craniotomy, could have passed something. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "The Result of GOP Failure," 18 July 2017 This wasn't supposed to be a vicious uppercut, a malignant tumor that ultimately would require Ryan to undergo a craniotomy, then 42 weeks of chemotherapy with seven weeks of radiation. Dan Wiederer,, "Zach Miller inspires 9-year-old cancer survivor: 'Ryan wasn't afraid anymore'," 5 Aug. 2017 Scanning done since the procedure (a minimally invasive craniotomy with an eyebrow incision) shows that the tissue of concern was completely resected by imaging criteria. Jonathan Evans, Esquire, "John McCain Has Been Diagnosed with Brain Cancer," 19 July 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'craniotomy.' 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 craniotomy

1855, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of craniotomy was in 1855

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cra·​ni·​ot·​o·​my | \ˌkrā-nē-ˈät-ə-mē \
plural craniotomies

Medical Definition of craniotomy 

1 : the operation of cutting or crushing the fetal head to effect delivery fetal craniotomies…performed to save the life of the mother— R. E. Frisch

2 : surgical opening of the skull

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