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atrophy

atrophy The word comes from the Greek, meaning ‘ill-fed’. In biomedical terms it means wasting — loss of mass from a tissue or organ from whatever cause. It is used as a verb: muscles, for example, can atrophy with simple disuse; or as a noun (they undergo disuse atrophy); or, they become atrophied if their nerves are damaged, so that they can no longer be stimulated into action. Another type — closer to ‘ill-feeding’ — is ischaemic atrophy from deprivation of blood supply, such as may happen in parts of the brain after stroke or severe head injury, or in heart muscle in coronary artery disease. Atrophy also happens in the normal course of events to cells or tissues which have fulfilled their useful life (such as umbilical blood vessels after birth or ovaries after the menopause) or as cells die off progressively with age (as in kidneys and brain).

Sheila Jennett


See also dementia; muscle wasting.

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"atrophy." The Oxford Companion to the Body. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." The Oxford Companion to the Body. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/medicine/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/atrophy

"atrophy." The Oxford Companion to the Body. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/medicine/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/atrophy

atrophy

at·ro·phy / ˈatrəfē/ • v. (-phies, -phied) [intr.] (of body tissue or an organ) waste away, typically due to the degeneration of cells, or become vestigial during evolution: without exercise, the muscles will atrophy | [as adj.] (atrophied) in some beetles, the hind wings are atrophied. ∎ fig. gradually decline in effectiveness or vigor due to underuse or neglect: her artistic skills atrophied from lack of use. • n. the condition or process of atrophying: gastric atrophy. ∎ fig. the gradual decline of effectiveness or vigor due to underuse or neglect: extensive TV viewing may lead to atrophy of children's imaginations. DERIVATIVES: a·troph·ic / āˈtrōfik; āˈträfik/ adj.

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"atrophy." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy-0

"atrophy." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy-0

atrophy

atrophy (ăt´rəfē), diminution in the size of a cell, tissue, or organ from its fully developed normal size. Temporary atrophy may occur in muscles that are not used, as when a limb is encased in a plaster cast. Interference with cellular nutrition, as through starvation; diseases affecting the nerve supply of tissues, e.g., poliomyelitis and muscular dystrophy; and prolonged disuse may cause a permanent wasting away of tissue. Atrophy may also follow hypertrophy.

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"atrophy." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/atrophy

"atrophy." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/atrophy

atrophy

atrophy (at-rŏ-fi) n. the wasting away of a normally developed organ or tissue due to degeneration of cells. Pathological atrophy may occur through starvation, disuse, denervation, or ischaemia. muscular a. atrophy of muscular tissue associated with various diseases, such as poliomyelitis. See also multiple system atrophy, spinal muscular atrophy, Sudek's atrophy.

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"atrophy." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/caregiving/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy

"atrophy." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/caregiving/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy

atrophy

atrophy wasting away of the body. XVII. — late L. atrophia — Gr. atrophíā, f. átrophos ill-nourished, f. A-4 + tréphein nourish.
So atrophied XVI. — F. atrophié.

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"atrophy." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"atrophy." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy-1

atrophy

atrophy In medicine, shrinking or wastage of tissues or organs. It may be associated with disease, malnutrition, or, in the case of muscle atrophy, with disuse.

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"atrophy." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/atrophy

"atrophy." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/atrophy

atrophy

atrophy Wasting of normally developed tissue or muscle as a result of disuse, ageing, or under‐nutrition.

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"atrophy." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy

"atrophy." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy

atrophy

atrophy Of a structure, limb, organ, tissue, etc., to diminish in size.

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"atrophy." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy

"atrophy." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy

atrophy

atrophy Of a structure, limb, organ, tissue, etc., to diminish in size.

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"atrophy." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"atrophy." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy-0

atrophy

atrophy The degeneration or withering of an organ or part of the body.

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"atrophy." A Dictionary of Biology. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"atrophy." A Dictionary of Biology. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy-1

atrophy

atrophydaffy, taffy •Amalfi •Cavafy, Gaddafi •Effie •beefy, Fifi, leafy •cliffy, iffy, jiffy, Liffey, niffy, sniffy, spiffy, squiffy, stiffy, whiffy •salsify •coffee, toffee •wharfie •Sophie, strophe, trophy •Dufy, goofy, Sufi •fluffy, huffy, puffy, roughie, roughy, scruffy, snuffy, stuffy, toughie •comfy • atrophy •anastrophe, catastrophe •calligraphy, epigraphy, tachygraphy •dystrophy, epistrophe •autobiography, bibliography, biography, cardiography, cartography, chirography, choreography, chromatography, cinematography, cosmography, cryptography, demography, discography, filmography, geography, hagiography, historiography, hydrography, iconography, lexicography, lithography, oceanography, orthography, palaeography (US paleography), photography, pornography, radiography, reprography, stenography, topography, typography •apostrophe •gymnosophy, philosophy, theosophy •furphy, murphy, scurfy, surfy, turfy

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"atrophy." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"atrophy." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy

"atrophy." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/atrophy