em·​bo·​lus | \ ˈem-bə-ləs How to pronounce embolus (audio) \
plural emboli\ ˈem-​bə-​ˌlī How to pronounce emboli (audio) \

Definition of embolus

: an abnormal particle (such as an air bubble) circulating in the blood — compare thrombus

Examples of embolus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Her symptoms seemed to suggest a possible blood clot but with an IVC filter in place, the likelihood of her having a dangerous pulmonary embolus, or blockage, was quite low. Philly.com, "Medical mystery: An unexpected - and ironic - cause of chest pain," 24 June 2018 Mueller, William — March 2, 1928: Mueller, a motor policeman, died of an embolus while investigating a hit-and-run accident. Indianapolis Star, "Officers killed in the line of duty," 6 July 2014 The possibility of pulmonary emboli derailing an NBA player's career is not far-fetched. Matt Velazquez, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Mirza Teletovic disputes report that pulmonary emboli will end his career," 28 Feb. 2018

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

1859, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for embolus

New Latin, from Greek embolos wedge-shaped object, stopper, from emballein

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Statistics for embolus

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Time Traveler for embolus

The first known use of embolus was in 1859

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More Definitions for embolus


em·​bo·​lus | \ ˈem-bə-ləs How to pronounce embolus (audio) \
plural emboli\ -​ˌlī How to pronounce emboli (audio) \

Medical Definition of embolus

: an abnormal particle (as an air bubble) circulating in the blood — compare thrombus

More from Merriam-Webster on embolus

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about embolus

Comments on embolus

What made you want to look up embolus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


something desired as essential

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