esophagus

noun
esoph·​a·​gus | \ i-ˈsä-fə-gəs How to pronounce esophagus (audio) \
plural esophagi\ i-​ˈsä-​fə-​ˌgī How to pronounce esophagus (audio) , -​ˌjī \

Definition of esophagus

: a muscular tube that conveys food from the mouth to the stomach and that in humans is about nine inches (23 centimeters) long and passes from the pharynx down the neck between the trachea and the spinal column and behind the left bronchus where it pierces the diaphragm slightly to the left of the middle line and joins the cardiac end of the stomach

Other Words from esophagus

esophageal \ i-​ˌsä-​fə-​ˈjē-​əl How to pronounce esophagus (audio) \ adjective

Examples of esophagus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Seriously, what other film this year provided sound for a worm’s esophagus? Tim Gray, Variety, 5 Jan. 2022 Some people absolutely need long-term treatment, such as people with Barrett’s esophagus, a complication of longstanding reflux. Dr. Keith Roach, oregonlive, 23 Nov. 2021 The blood tests were more likely to detect more advanced cancers, and was most accurate in detecting 12 kinds of cancer—including liver, head and neck, esophagus, pancreas, and ovarian—for which there are no routine screening tests. Elizabeth Narins, Health.com, 8 Nov. 2021 Experts will then open their beaks and massage a soft rubber tube down their esophagus for a feeding. Robin Estrin, Los Angeles Times, 9 Oct. 2021 Hot dogs are not all that Chestnut crams down his esophagus during food competitions. Washington Post, 25 Aug. 2021 Oliver had surgery in January to connect his esophagus and his stomach. Michael Hollan, Fox News, 15 Oct. 2021 But if your lower esophageal sphincter is malfunctioning for some reason, those acids can bubble their way back up into your esophagus, causing a burning sensation. Elizabeth Millard, SELF, 19 Oct. 2021 Sleeping on your back can also be helpful for people with acid reflux: Memmini says lying on a pillow elevates the head, which can prevent contents of the stomach from moving up the esophagus. Ashley Abramson, Health.com, 5 Oct. 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of esophagus

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for esophagus

Middle English ysophagus, from Medieval Latin ysofugus, from Greek oisophagos, from oisein to be going to carry + phagein to eat — more at baksheesh

Learn More About esophagus

Time Traveler for esophagus

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near esophagus

esophagitis

esophagus

esoteric

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for esophagus

Last Updated

16 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Esophagus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/esophagus. Accessed 28 Jan. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for esophagus

esophagus

noun

English Language Learners Definition of esophagus

: the tube that leads from the mouth through the throat to the stomach

esophagus

noun
esoph·​a·​gus | \ i-ˈsä-fə-gəs How to pronounce esophagus (audio) \
plural esophagi\ -​ˌgī , -​ˌjī \

Kids Definition of esophagus

: a muscular tube that leads from the mouth through the throat to the stomach

esophagus

noun
esoph·​a·​gus
variants: or chiefly British oesophagus \ i-​ˈsäf-​ə-​gəs How to pronounce esophagus (audio) \
plural esophagi\ -​ˌgī How to pronounce esophagus (audio) , -​ˌjī How to pronounce esophagus (audio) \

Medical Definition of esophagus

: a muscular tube that in adult humans is about nine inches (23 centimeters) long and passes from the pharynx down the neck between the trachea and the spinal column and behind the left bronchus where it pierces the diaphragm slightly to the left of the middle line and joins the cardiac end of the stomach

More from Merriam-Webster on esophagus

Nglish: Translation of esophagus for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of esophagus for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about esophagus

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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