diaphragm

noun
di·​a·​phragm | \ ˈdī-ə-ˌfram How to pronounce diaphragm (audio) \

Definition of diaphragm

1 : a body partition of muscle and connective tissue specifically : the partition separating the chest and abdominal cavities in mammals
2 : a dividing membrane or thin partition especially in a tube
3a : a more or less rigid partition in the body or shell of an invertebrate
b : a transverse septum in a plant stem
4 : a device that limits the aperture of a lens or optical system — compare iris diaphragm
5 : a thin flexible disk (as in a microphone or loudspeaker) that vibrates when struck by sound waves or that vibrates to generate sound waves
6 : a molded cap usually of thin rubber fitted over the uterine cervix to act as a mechanical contraceptive barrier

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Other Words from diaphragm

diaphragmatic \ ˌdī-​ə-​frə(g)-​ˈma-​tik How to pronounce diaphragmatic (audio) , -​ˌfrag-​ \ adjective
diaphragmatically \ ˌdī-​ə-​frə(g)-​ˈma-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce diaphragmatically (audio) \ adverb

Examples of diaphragm in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And an inflatable balloon positioned under the liver replicates the movement of the diaphragm during breathing, which prevents tissue damage from constant pressure on the organ. Tanya Lewis, Scientific American, "Machine That Keeps Livers Alive for a Week Can Repair Damaged Organs," 6 May 2020 No one knows exactly why obesity, but hypotheses abound: For example, abdominal obesity can cause compression of the diaphragm, lungs and chest capacity. 6. Melina Delkic, New York Times, "Jobs, Contact Tracing, Mercury Regulations: Your Thursday Evening Briefing," 16 Apr. 2020 Two keys to using the mouth call: Don’t simply blow across the reeds, but huff air up from deep in your diaphragm. Michael Hanback, Outdoor Life, "25 Top Spring Turkey Hunting Tips," 20 Apr. 2020 There was no cure and as yet no vaccine, and for children whose disease was so severe that the diaphragm was paralyzed too, death would quickly come by suffocation. Jeffrey Kluger, Time, "To Fight COVID-19, Ford Is Planning to Manufacture Ventilators. This Isn't the First Time the Automaker Has Made Medical Devices," 2 Apr. 2020 Her 62-year-old husband, Franny, struggling with ALS since 2016, uses a BiPAP, which forces air through his nose to make up for the weakness in his diaphragm. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "For families of ALS patients, providing home care can be an infinite challenge," 11 Jan. 2020 Audio entered a horn and vibrated a diaphragm, which pushed a stylus into wax to cut grooves. Eleanor Cummins, Popular Science, "Humans have been recording sound since before they could play it back," 9 Jan. 2020 The bullet entered her chest and penetrated a lung, her diaphragm and stomach before lodging near her hip. Mark Gillispie, USA TODAY, "She's a victim of New Year's Eve gunfire. Don't fire a gun to celebrate the holiday, police urge," 30 Dec. 2019 Bennett, who has a staff of about 65 during the season, says his training covers tips such as screaming from the diaphragm, maximizing energy without getting exhausted and literal scare tactics. Hannah Sampson, chicagotribune.com, "Inside the creation of travel-worthy haunted houses," 29 Oct. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for diaphragm

Middle English diafragma, from Late Latin diaphragma, from Greek, from diaphrassein to barricade, from dia- + phrassein to enclose

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Time Traveler for diaphragm

Time Traveler

The first known use of diaphragm was in the 14th century

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Statistics for diaphragm

Last Updated

25 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Diaphragm.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/diaphragm. Accessed 3 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for diaphragm

diaphragm

noun
How to pronounce diaphragm (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of diaphragm

medical : a large flat muscle that separates the lungs from the stomach area and that is used in breathing
technical : a device that controls the amount of light passing through the lens of a camera
: a device shaped like a cup that is placed in the vagina to prevent pregnancy

diaphragm

noun
di·​a·​phragm | \ ˈdī-ə-ˌfram How to pronounce diaphragm (audio) \

Kids Definition of diaphragm

1 : a muscular wall that separates the lungs from the stomach area and assists in breathing in
2 : a thin disk (as in a microphone) that vibrates when sound strikes it

diaphragm

noun
di·​a·​phragm | \ ˈdī-ə-ˌfram How to pronounce diaphragm (audio) \

Medical Definition of diaphragm

1 : a body partition of muscle and connective tissue specifically : the partition separating the chest and abdominal cavities in mammals — see pelvic diaphragm, urogenital diaphragm
2 : a device that limits the aperture of a lens or optical system
3 : a molded cap usually of thin rubber fitted over the uterine cervix to act as a mechanical contraceptive barrier

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More from Merriam-Webster on diaphragm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with diaphragm

Spanish Central: Translation of diaphragm

Nglish: Translation of diaphragm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of diaphragm for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about diaphragm

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