scan

verb
\ ˈskan How to pronounce scan (audio) \
scanned; scanning

Definition of scan

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to read or mark so as to show metrical structure scan poetry
2 : to examine by point-by-point observation or checking:
a : to investigate thoroughly by checking point by point and often repeatedly a fire lookout scanning the hills with binoculars
b : to glance from point to point of often hastily, casually, or in search of a particular item scan the want ads looking for a job
3a : to examine systematically (as by passing a beam of radiation over or through) in order to obtain data especially for display or storage scanned the patient's heart radar scans the horizon scan the photos into the computer
b : to pass over in the formation of an image the electron beam scans the picture tube

intransitive verb

1 : to scan verse
2 : to conform to a metrical pattern this poem scans well

scan

noun

Definition of scan (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or process of scanning
2 : a radar or television trace
3 : an image formed by scanning something: such as
a : a depiction (such as a photograph) of the distribution of a radioactive material in something (such as a bodily organ)
b : an image of a bodily part produced (as by computer) by combining ultrasonic or radiographic data obtained from several angles or sections

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Other Words from scan

Verb

scannable \ ˈska-​nə-​bəl How to pronounce scannable (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for scan

Verb

scrutinize, scan, inspect, examine mean to look at or over. scrutinize stresses close attention to minute detail. scrutinized the hospital bill scan implies a surveying from point to point often suggesting a cursory overall observation. scanned the wine list inspect implies scrutinizing for errors or defects. inspected my credentials examine suggests a scrutiny in order to determine the nature, condition, or quality of a thing. examined the specimens

Examples of scan in a Sentence

Verb

He scanned the field with binoculars. He scanned the audience looking for his parents. She scanned his face for any clue to what he was thinking. She quickly scanned the pages of the newspaper. She scanned through the list to find her name. Their bags were scanned at the airport. This machine scans a patient's brain.

Noun

The patient underwent a brain scan. The doctor examined the bone scans.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Store security said the suspect went through the self-checkout and failed to scan and pay for numerous items. Bruce Geiselman, cleveland.com, "Early-morning taco run signals trouble for driver: North Olmsted Police Blotter," 9 June 2019 The facilities have also increasingly installed optical scanners, computers that can quickly scan and identify different grades of plastic and send them to the right bin. Devin Kelly, Anchorage Daily News, "How recycling works in Anchorage: Most of it ends up in the Lower 48," 7 June 2019 Nike Fit will utilize smartphone cameras and augmented reality to scan users’ feet and measure the full shape of both feet. Dalvin Brown, USA TODAY, "Nike adds mannequins for plus-sized and para-sport athletes to its flagship store," 7 June 2019 Inside, there's a spa room and an artificial intelligence mirror that can scan and order items for delivery. Hema Parmar And Kim Bhasin, chicagotribune.com, "Macy's plans 60 new Bluemercury stores," 3 July 2018 Abraham and his group designed a device that can scan for and detect a patient's heart rate without physically touching the person. Cassie Dickman, sacbee, "Graduating from UC Davis at 15 is the latest milestone for this prodigy," 20 June 2018 Only after clearing the bag check would ticket holders be allowed to take a few more steps, have their tickets scanned and enter the theater. David Lyman, Cincinnati.com, "Ticket? Check. Show up? Check. Aronoff confronts real-world concerns? Bag check.," 6 June 2018 And as Instagram grows in importance, there is no way to scan and filter photos by visual cues such as brand logos or landscapes, which could prove useful for industry execs seeking brand partnerships. Cherie Hu, Billboard, "Meet the 2018 Techstars Music Startups Transforming the Music Industry for Good: Exclusive," 3 May 2018 Original paper documents can be scanned and downloaded to an external hard drive, flash drive, CD or DVD. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, "Trump tax reform: Don't expect big tax break on losses from flooding, storms," 5 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

So about two years ago, Cannon went to a specialist, who ordered a scan of her spine. Jon Hamilton, Dallas News, "Austin woman's spinal surgery brings back-breaking $94,000 bill a year later," 20 June 2019 On Tuesday, a scan showed that the treatment had not stopped the cancer, according to Byler-Dann's office. Deanese Williams-harris, chicagotribune.com, "Two years after burying her mother, Chalise Scholl is relying on social media to pay for her own funeral," 14 June 2019 At the 2018 meeting of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, Pittman's Ph.D. student Arindam Roy presented early results from the lab's laser scans of Yi qi. National Geographic, "New species of bat-wing dinosaur discovered," 8 May 2019 Lily-Mae was treated for cancer and recent scans showed no sign of the disease’s return. Lucette Lagnado, WSJ, "For Children With Cancer, Hope for New Treatments," 15 Jan. 2019 Brain scans have shown that the drug can decrease activity in the brain’s default mode network — which, when overactive, is reportedly linked to depression, phobias, and anxiety. Erica Sweeney, Teen Vogue, "What Ayahuasca Is, and What You Should Know About It," 31 Aug. 2018 The scans and testing would be repeated at intervals a year or more apart to track changes over time. Paula Spencer Scott, Woman's Day, "I Participated in a Clinical Study to See if I Had Dementia — Here's What I Learned," 26 Mar. 2019 The person interpreting the scan on-screen suggests that this result could mean that Honnold just needs a higher level of stimulation than your average person to register fear. Amy Marturana, SELF, "'Free Solo' Star Alex Honnold Explains How He Got Into the Terrifying Sport of Free Solo Climbing," 26 Feb. 2019 Then perhaps the scanning tasks will begin to divide based on the tasks that require the scans. Elizabeth Emens, WSJ, "The Stickiness of ‘Life Admin’," 30 Dec. 2018

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1706, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for scan

Verb

Middle English scannen, from Late Latin scandere, from Latin, to climb; akin to Middle Irish sceinnid he springs, Sanskrit skandati he leaps

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Learn More about scan

Dictionary Entries near scan

scamperer

scampi

scamster

scan

Scand

Scandahoovian

scandal

Statistics for scan

Last Updated

23 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scan

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

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More Definitions for scan

scan

verb

English Language Learners Definition of scan

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to look at (something) carefully usually in order to find someone or something
: to look over or read (something) quickly
: to look at the inside of (something) by using a special machine

scan

noun

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

: the act of looking at something carefully or quickly
: the act or process of using a special machine to see the inside of something (such as a part of the body)
: a picture of the inside of something that is made by a special machine

scan

verb
\ ˈskan How to pronounce scan (audio) \
scanned; scanning

Kids Definition of scan

1 : to examine or look over carefully He scanned the field with binoculars.
2 : to look through or over quickly I scanned the headlines of the newspaper.
3 : to examine with a special device (as a scanner) especially to obtain information My bag was scanned at the airport.

scan

verb
\ ˈskan How to pronounce scan (audio) \
scanned; scanning

Medical Definition of scan

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to examine especially systematically with a sensing device (as a photometer or a beam of radiation)
b : to pass an electron beam over and convert (an image) into variations of electrical properties (as voltage) that convey information electronically
2 : to make a scan of (as the human body) in order to detect the presence or localization of radioactive material

intransitive verb

: to make a scan of the body or of an organ or part

scan

noun

Medical Definition of scan (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or process of scanning
2a : a depiction (as a photograph) of the distribution of a radioactive material in something (as a bodily organ)
b : an image of a bodily part produced (as by computer) by combining ultrasonographic or radiographic data obtained from several angles or sections

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More from Merriam-Webster on scan

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scan

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scan

Spanish Central: Translation of scan

Nglish: Translation of scan for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scan for Arabic Speakers

Comments on scan

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