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a combining form meaning “cutting, incision” of an organ, “excision” of an object, as specified by the initial element (appendectomy; lithotomy); also occurring in abstract nouns corresponding to adjectives ending in -tomous, (dichotomy).
Compare -tome, tomo-, -tomous.
Origin of -tomy
representing Greek -tomia; see -tome, -y3 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for -tomy


combining form
indicating a surgical cutting of a specified part or tissue: lobotomy
Word Origin
from Greek -tomia; see -tome
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for -tomy

word-forming element meaning "a cutting," from Greek -tomia "a cutting of," from tome "a cutting, section" (see tome).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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-tomy in Medicine

-tomy suff.
Act of cutting; incision: gastrotomy.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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