gangrene

1 of 2

noun

gan·​grene ˈgaŋ-ˌgrēn How to pronounce gangrene (audio) gaŋ-ˈgrēn How to pronounce gangrene (audio)
ˈgan-ˌgrēn,
gan-ˈgrēn
1
: local death of soft tissues due to loss of blood supply
2
: pervasive decay or corruption : rot
moral gangrene
gangrenous adjective

gangrene

2 of 2

verb

gangrened; gangrening

intransitive verb

: to become gangrenous

Examples of gangrene in a Sentence

Noun When gangrene set in, the soldier's leg had to be amputated.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
As her career stalled in the 2000s and 2010s, Bleeth’s personal life was spinning out due to cocaine abuse that resulted in gangrene in her nose. Kathleen Perricone, EW.com, 20 Mar. 2024 If frostbite is not treated quickly, the frostbitten area turns black and dies (gangrene). Cara Beth Lee, Verywell Health, 4 Jan. 2024
Verb
With this disease, narrow arteries prevent the legs and arms from receiving enough blood flow, causing chronic pain, wounds that don’t heal, and even gangrene. Theresa Gaffney, STAT, 22 Mar. 2024 Infection set in, progressed to gangrene, and Daniels died from sepsis or blood poisoning. Scott Lafee, San Diego Union-Tribune, 26 Dec. 2023 See all Example Sentences for gangrene 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'gangrene.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

borrowed from Latin gangraena, gangrēna, borrowed from Greek gángraina, apparently derivative (with -aina, as in phagédaina "cancerous sore") of a base gangr-, of uncertain meaning and origin; replacing earlier and Middle English cancrene, borrowed from Medieval Latin cancrēna, blend of gangrēna and cancer cancer

Note: The supposed connection between gángraina and the verb gráō, grân "devour" (dissimilated from reduplicated *gar-gr-?) is derivationally not very plausible; as with other words formed with the suffix -aina, gángraina may be of pre-Greek origin.

Verb

derivative of gangrene entry 1

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1597, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of gangrene was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near gangrene

Cite this Entry

“Gangrene.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gangrene. Accessed 22 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

gangrene

1 of 2 noun
gan·​grene ˈgaŋ-ˌgrēn How to pronounce gangrene (audio)
ˈgan-;
gaŋ-ˈgrēn,
gan-
: the death of soft tissues in a local area of the body due to loss of the blood supply
gangrenous adjective

gangrene

2 of 2 verb
gangrened; gangrening
: to make or become diseased with gangrene

Medical Definition

gangrene

1 of 2 noun
gan·​grene ˈgaŋ-ˌgrēn How to pronounce gangrene (audio) gaŋ-ˈ How to pronounce gangrene (audio)
ˈgan-ˌ,
gan-ˈ
: local death of soft tissues due to loss of blood supply

gangrene

2 of 2 verb
gangrened; gangrening

intransitive verb

: to become gangrenous
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