microcephaly

noun
mi·​cro·​ceph·​a·​ly | \-ˈse-fə-lē \

Definition of microcephaly 

: a condition of abnormal smallness of the circumference of the head that is present at birth or develops within the first few years of life and is often associated with developmental delays, impaired cognitive development, poor coordination and balance, deficits in hearing and vision, and seizures

Examples of microcephaly in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

There is no treatment for microcephaly that can return a child's head to a healthy size or shape. Jacqueline Howard, CNN, "Pediatricians are concerned about climate change, and here's why," 8 May 2018 Many infections, like rubella and HIV, can cause microcephaly. Washington Post, "AP Explains: Zika and its link to microcephaly," 7 June 2018 During the South American outbreak, doctors and scientists observed that infection with the Zika virus during pregnancy was associated with microcephaly and other negative health effects. Susan Scutti, CNN, "Fewer babies were born in Brazil amid Zika outbreak, study says," 29 May 2018 Already, one pregnant woman who likely contracted the virus in Brazil in May 2015 later gave birth to a baby in Hawaii suffering from microcephaly. Dina Fine Maron, Scientific American, "Zika Virus Threatens U.S. from Abroad," 26 Jan. 2016 Infection during pregnancy can cause birth defects, including microcephaly in which the baby is born with a small head. Stephen Hudak, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Health officials wary of mosquitoes — and rising risk of Zika and other illnesses — after heavy rains," 24 May 2018 During pregnancy, Zika infection can cause a serious birth defect called microcephaly, a condition in which a baby's head is smaller than expected and the brain has not developed properly. Jacqueline Howard, CNN, "Pediatricians are concerned about climate change, and here's why," 8 May 2018 But the biggest risk comes for pregnant women who develop Zika: The disease can lead to miscarriage and cause serious birth defects like microcephaly, a potentially fatal brain condition. Emma Sarran Webster, Allure, "What You Should Know About the Rise of Insect-Spread Diseases," 3 May 2018 Zika is known to cause a range of birth defects, including microcephaly — an abnormally small head — collapsed skulls and other deformities, and eye defects. NBC News, "What is the Zika virus? What you need to know," 27 Apr. 2018

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

1863, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for microcephaly

New Latin microcephalia, from microcephalus microcephalic, from micr- + Greek kephalē head — more at cephalic

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Last Updated

10 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for microcephaly

The first known use of microcephaly was in 1863

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More Definitions for microcephaly

microcephaly

noun
mi·​cro·​ceph·​a·​ly | \-ˈsef-ə-lē \
plural microcephalies

Medical Definition of microcephaly 

: a condition of abnormal smallness of the circumference of the head that is present at birth or develops within the first few years of life and is often associated with developmental delays, impaired cognitive development, poor coordination and balance, deficits in hearing and vision, and seizures

More from Merriam-Webster on microcephaly

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about microcephaly

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