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
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for -tomy


n combining form

indicating a surgical cutting of a specified part or tissuelobotomy

Word Origin for -tomy

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

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

Medicine definitions for -tomy



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.