hy·​po·​der·​mic | \ ˌhī-pə-ˈdər-mik How to pronounce hypodermic (audio) \

Definition of hypodermic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : adapted for use in or administered by injection beneath the skin
2 : of or relating to the parts beneath the skin
3 : resembling a hypodermic injection in effect : stimulating



Definition of hypodermic (Entry 2 of 2)

Other Words from hypodermic


hypodermically \ ˌhī-​pə-​ˈdər-​mi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce hypodermic (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for hypodermic

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of hypodermic in a Sentence

Noun he hardly felt it when the nurse stuck the hypodermic in his arm
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The floor was covered in a plethora of hypodermic needles, which were properly destroyed later. cleveland, 24 Sep. 2021 Clean & Safe crews collected more than 70,000 bags of trash, picked up 65,000 hypodermic needles and removed tens of thousands of graffiti tags downtown in the last year, according to figures provided by the program. oregonlive, 15 Sep. 2021 Police found an unidentified crystalline substance and hypodermic syringes in the Strongsville man’s vehicle. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, 2 July 2021 During the traffic stop, she was also charged with criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument. Katie Campione, PEOPLE.com, 17 Aug. 2021 The nurse popped one cartridge out of the hypodermic chamber and inserted the next. Donald Antrim, The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2021 Officers saw in Salvatori's possession multiple hypodermic needles, and a dose of Narcan, used to stop the effects of an opioid overdose, and two spoons with THC and heroin present. Paul Walsh, Star Tribune, 17 June 2021 Inside the car was a backpack containing hypodermic syringes, a bent spoon, three glass stems and other drug paraphernalia. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, 20 May 2021 Florida forbid counties from offering free hypodermic needles and syringes in exchange for used ones until 2019 when state lawmakers learned the results of a five-year pilot program in Miami-Dade County. Stephen Hudak, orlandosentinel.com, 14 June 2021

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


1863, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1889, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hypodermic


hypo- + -dermic (in endermic "acting through the skin," epidermic)

Note: Term apparently originated by the English surgeon Charles Hunter in "On the hypodermic treatment of diseases," The Retrospect of Medicine, vol. 39 (January-June, 1859), p. 50: "Medicinal substances may be introduced into the cellular tissue beneath the skin with the greatest facility by means of a minute syringe, and so introduced certain medicines will act with an extraordinary rapidity, and the most satisfactory result. To distinguish this plan of injecting beneath the skin from the epidermic and endermic, it would be as well perhaps to use similar phraseology, and call this the hypodermic method."


by shortening

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The first known use of hypodermic was in 1863

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Dictionary Entries Near hypodermic



hypodermic injection

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Statistics for hypodermic

Last Updated

3 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Hypodermic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hypodermic. Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for hypodermic



English Language Learners Definition of hypodermic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: going under the skin
: used for putting fluids into or taking fluids out of the body by going under the skin



English Language Learners Definition of hypodermic (Entry 2 of 2)

: a device that uses a thin, hollow needle for putting fluids into or taking fluids out of the body : syringe


hy·​po·​der·​mic | \ -ˈdər-mik How to pronounce hypodermic (audio) \

Medical Definition of hypodermic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to the parts beneath the skin
2 : adapted for use in or administered by injection beneath the skin

Other Words from hypodermic

hypodermically \ -​mi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce hypodermic (audio) \ adverb



Medical Definition of hypodermic (Entry 2 of 2)

More from Merriam-Webster on hypodermic

Nglish: Translation of hypodermic for Spanish Speakers


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