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[spahyn-l] /ˈspaɪn l/
of, relating to, or belonging to a spine or thornlike structure, especially to the backbone.
Medicine/Medical. a spinal anesthetic.
Origin of spinal
1570-80; < Late Latin spīnālis, equivalent to Latin spīn(a) spina + -ālis -al1
Related forms
spinally, adverb
interspinal, adjective
nonspinal, adjective
prespinal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for spinal
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He said that all such disturbances are acted upon in the spinal cord.

    Understanding the Scriptures Francis McConnell
  • Balta said, and Murray felt the muzzle of the neuro-pistol on his spinal column.

    The Martian Cabal Roman Frederick Starzl
  • "spinal meningitis," they said laconically, and they were taking him down to the hospital.

    The Trail of '98

    Robert W. Service
  • The spinal distortion is one of the ordinary consequences of lacing.

    The Arena Various
  • He also got tired of waiting and suggested it might be some spinal trouble.

    A Labrador Doctor

    Wilfred Thomason Grenfell
British Dictionary definitions for spinal


of or relating to the spine or the spinal cord
denoting a laboratory animal in which the spinal cord has been severed: a spinal rat
short for spinal anaesthesia
Derived Forms
spinally, adverb
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 spinal

1570s, from Late Latin spinalis, from spina (see spine).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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spinal in Medicine

spinal spi·nal (spī'nəl)

  1. Relating to or situated near the spinal column or spinal cord.

  2. Relating to any spine or spinous process.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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spinal in Science
  1. See vertebral column.

  2. Any of various pointed projections, processes, or appendages of animals.

  3. A sharp-pointed projection on a plant, especially a hard, narrow modified leaf, as on a cactus, that is adapted to reduce water loss. Compare thorn. See more at leaf.

spinal adjective
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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