autotomy

[ aw-tot-uh-mee ]
/ ɔˈtɒt ə mi /

noun, plural au·tot·o·mies.

Zoology.
  1. separation of a body part.
  2. self-amputation of a damaged or trapped appendage.
the performance of surgery upon oneself.

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Origin of autotomy

First recorded in 1895–1900; auto-1 + -tomy

OTHER WORDS FROM autotomy

au·to·tom·ic [aw-tuh-tom-ik] /ˌɔ təˈtɒm ɪk/, au·tot·o·mous, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for autotomy

British Dictionary definitions for autotomy

autotomy
/ (ɔːˈtɒtəmɪ) /

noun plural -mies

the casting off by an animal of a part of its body, to facilitate escape when attacked

Derived forms of autotomy

autotomic (ˌɔːtəˈtɒmɪk), adjective
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

Medical definitions for autotomy

autotomy
[ ô-tŏtə-mē ]

n.

The spontaneous casting off of a body part, especially of an invertebrate, when injured or under attack.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.